Essential Tips on Structuring, Running and Growing a New Minnesota Business

Updated: Jan 6, 2021

Overview

Thinking of starting a new Minnesota business? If you are, you’re going to need the best information and help available. That’s what Minneapolis Business Mentors does! This short guide written by our volunteer members is designed to assist you in your efforts to getting started.


Having the best startup experience requires you to be prepared. This guide will provide you with an overview of 7 Key Areas you need to consider. From writing a business plan to implementation of your marketing strategies, we’ve covered just some of the things you’ll need to know. This guide provides practical advice based on our experience as business owners and mentors. We have included several links throughout to more specific information.


For more in-depth help, please contact us at info@mbmentors.org


1. Planning and Preparing

Let’s start with being prepared. Why is it important? As you can see in the chart below, 50% of new business fail within the first 5 years. The better prepared and planned out you are, the better your odds of being in the 50% that succeed.

Are you ready to start your own business?

If this is your first time starting a business, we recommend you begin with a self-assessment. Ask yourself, “do I have the traits of a successful entrepreneur?” It’s important to be honest in assessing your traits.


Shown below are a few of the behavioral traits of successful entrepreneurs.

Don’t worry if you don’t have all of these attributes – most people don’t. You can acquire many of these characteristics by learning and practicing them. You can also create an informal board of advisors and get FREE help from Minneapolis Business Mentors.


For more information on starting your business see: https://www.sba.gov/business-guide


A. Business Planning

According to the SBA, “A good business plan guides you through each stage of starting and managing your business. You’ll use your business plan as a roadmap for how to structure, run, and grow your new business. It’s a way to think through the key elements of your business.


Business plans can help you get funding or bring on new partners. Investors want to feel confident they’ll see a return on their investment. Your business plan is the tool you’ll use to convince people that working with you — or investing in your company — is a smart choice.”


B. Business Plan Overview

MINNEAPOLIS BUSINESS MENTORS can assist you in developing a business plan that meets your needs. Shown below is an overview of 2 types of business plan assistance we offer business owners.


Feasibility Business Plan

The feasibility business plan is an early stage assessment of a business idea. It contains only limited (preliminary) assumptions concerning business structure, products, services, resources, and other information concerning your business idea. This plan will help you identify key drivers of your business. A driver is an element that is critical to the success or failure of a business.


If your decision is to proceed with your idea, a more detailed ‘lean startup” or "traditional business plan” should be prepared to confirm your preliminary assumptions. Why? Because the process of developing a detailed business plan will significantly enhance your likelihood of success.


Startup Business Plan

Lean startup business plans are less common but still use a standard structure. They focus on summarizing only the most important points of the key elements of your plan in a question/answer format. They are typically only a few pages long. There are many versions of lean startup templates, MINNEAPOLIS BUSINESS MENTORS utilize questions from “21 Question Success Plan” written by Robert Voss.