Optimism—the kind that screams, “I’m gonna make it!”—is a pre-requisite for any small business owner. That being said, however, too much optimism can blind you to obstacles you may face when developing your product or service. Yes, “move fast and break stuff” is a great empowering platitude, but it’s no substitute for giving yourself some extra lead time and setting aside money for emergencies. In other words, you need to expect the unexpected. The best way you can do that is by budgeting enough money and time from the beginning of your business planning. That way, the business won’t get run over by the runaway train of poor planning.
As Klickly founder and CEO Cooper Harris explains, she learned this the hard way when creating her business’ minimum viable product (MVP). Cooper estimated that it should only take approximately six weeks to create a functioning prototype of her new software to show investors. Instead, it took much longer, and as we all know, time is money. As a result, Cooper highly recommends that other aspiring small business owners budget for unforeseen hiccups accordingly before starting any fundraising efforts. Even better, Cooper suggests that you take twice the amount of time and money you think you need to launch the business—and then double those amounts.
No one said being a business owner is easy, but that doesn’t mean you have to suffer as a result. Draft up a thorough business plan that budgets for the extra time needed to launch your product or service. Pitch to investors accordingly and raise the necessary capital. Keep a close eye on your expenses with bookkeeping software or a CPA to help you track your numbers. Above all else, stay positive and keep the faith that today’s idea will be tomorrow’s success story.