I want to start a cake decorating business. It won't be for another couple of years till I actually "start" but Im wondering what I should do first? What things do I need to do? I know NOTHING about having my own business. It will be out of my home so do I need some kind of licence? (Im in Canada). I honestly don't know where to start!
(and Im not starting for a couple of years because I want to wait till my youngest will be in school, there's no way I could do it now with that little rascal running around the way he does!!)
The first thing to do is find out if ur dreams even possible - I'm sure there's an article on here, or just google ur area and home business/ food selling/ environmental health. Then read this forum properly, and allow at least a couple of days! It covers every single aspect of it, including liscenses, food hygiene, stress, pita customers, marketing, contracts, contacts, networking, courses, stockists, tax.... The list goes on! It will be an education just getting to grips with this stuff.
Write a business plan...
Business Resource Software, Inc. (businessplans.org)
Palo Alto Software, Inc. (bplans.com)
Once you find what you need, start buying your equipment. Starting debt free is the best way to start.
thanks for your advice. I'll read the business forum more thoroughly to help me out. And a business plan is a good idea. I wouldn't have thought of doing that.
I have most of what I need now (equipment stuff) since I already do cakes (but just for friends and family)
You may also wish to post a very specific title in the business forum. "Where to start" could mean literally anything. It is very helpful to the poster and those who reply if you can provide more specific titles.
Home business in (whatever province), Canada--advice pls
Starting business in (province), Canada, advice?
Need advice for starting business in (province) Canada
Help with planning to start business in (province) Canada
That way, the post is targeted to fellow Canadians in your province who can give you advice about Canada, not the States. State laws vary tremendously in the USA, and even vary from county to county.
I am in BC and the first people I had to see were the local: Health Unit, City licencing officials, Access Center (for registration of name)
Look to those first and they will let you know where to go from there.
Some of these were already mentioned but i'll list them again
1) write a business plan (many of the things below will need to be done during your business plan so it's a two for one deal)
2) Talk to the HD to find out what the regulations are for your area and what locations are options.
3) Start price shopping for everything, and "equipment" can mean stove, range hood, etc... all depending on whether or not you will (or even can) do it out of your home or if you're looking at a new place you'll have to build out.
4) Take some sort of business class!! You said you don't know anything about having your own business. A business and cake decorating are two COMPLETELY different things. You can know how to decorate and bake, but those are your product for a business. Once you actually start your business you'll do a lot less of that a lot more business stuff, just keeping track of the books can be a full time job.