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The biggest issue entrepreneurs face resides in themselves. It’s the mere fact that they don’t design their new company to last. You might be sitting there shaking your head, but it’s the truth – if you don’t start out planning to expand then it won’t happen. Those first few moves that you make as an entrepreneur are vital and should be a set up for when you expand.

1| Name

So you’re a one-man band at the moment, doing whatever service it is you do, selling whatever product you sell – and you’re going by what name? Your name? No. Your branding start’s from day one, with the first employee – you. Naming your company prepares it for when you hire more people and branch out. If you set up accounts, emails, and websites under your own name and then have to change it all a couple of years down the line, you’ll cost yourself time, money, and clients. It might seem silly referring to yourself as Jupiter & Co, but you have prepared your business to grow, and give the illusion of a much bigger enterprise than you already have.

2| Files

All important documents these days are on a device of some sort. You might have a work computer or laptop, or work from a tablet. Either way, saving any documents to the hard drive will only damage your business. What if it breaks for starters? You’ll lose it all. Most people use the cloud to save things online, but, as a business, you should think about investing in an online project file. Again, it seems odd to have software suitable for a large business, just for one person – but aren’t you looking to grow into a large business? Starting with the right software will save you time and money, and lessens the risk of losing data down the line.

3| Declaring

You may be a single person, and your business might be on the side of another full-time job, but you still need to declare that you are a company. For both legal and financial reasons, declaring yourself as a company will save you a massive headache down the line, and, quite possibly, a lawsuit. Using your company name register yourself as a sole trader (a limited company is its own legal identity, if you think your company falls under this jurisdiction, do the research before declaring.)

4| Branding

Going back to what was said in point 1; your emails and websites. Your company is who you represent. And it’s your responsibility to build up a good reputation and branding for that company. One of the first things you will do as a business owner is to set up your online presence, through a website and social media. Using Facebook Business rather than a usual FB page, and an email address set up with your company’s name – these will help you to keep your private life separate from your business life. Your brand isn’t about you getting drunk last Saturday and having a great time; it’s about the new advances you’re making and exciting projects you’re involved in.

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