Starting a business is risky at best, but your chances of making it will be better if you understand the problems you'll encounter and have those problems worked out before you start. The first question you need to answer is about you: do you have what it takes? Below are some questions to help you evaluate whether you do.
Are you a self-starter?
[ ] I do things on my own. Nobody has to tell me to get going.
[ ] If someone gets me started, I keep going all right.
[ ] Easy does it. I don't put myself out until I have to.
How do you feel about other people?
[ ] I like people. I can get along with just about anyone.
[ ] I have plenty of friends; I don't need anyone else.
[ ] Most people irritate me.
Can you lead others?
[ ] I can get most people to go along when I start something.
[ ] I can give the orders if someone tells me what we should do.
[ ] I let someone else get things moving; then I go along if I feet like it.
Can you take responsibility?
[ ] I like to take charge of things and see them through.
[ ] I'll take over if I have to, but I'd rather let someone else be responsible.
[ ] There's always some eager beaver around wanting to show how smart he is. I say let him.
How good an organizer are you?
[ ] I like to have a plan before I start. I'm usually the one to get things lined up when the group wants to do something.
[ ] I do all right unless things get too confused; then I quit.
[ ] I get all set and then something comes along and presents too many problems. So I just take things as they come.
How good a worker are you?
[ ] I can keep going as long as I need to. I don't mind working hard for something I want.
[ ] I'll work hard for a while, but when I've had enough, that's it.
[ ] I can't see that hard work gets you anywhere.
Can you make decisions?
[ ] I can make up my mind in a hurry if I have to. It usually turns out okay, too.
[ ] I can if I have plenty of time. If I have to make up my mind fast, I think later that I should have decided the other way.
[ ] I don't like to be the one to decide things.
Can people trust what you say?
[ ] You bet they can. I don't say things I don't mean.
[ ] I try to be on the level most of the time, but sometimes I just say what is easiest.
[ ] Why bother if the other person doesn't know the difference?
Can you stick with it?
[ ] If I make up my mind to do something, I don't let anything stop me.
[ ] I usually finish what I start--if it goes well.
[ ] If it doesn't go right immediately, I quit. Why beat my brains out?
How good is your health?
[ ] I never run down!
[ ] I have enough energy for most things I want to do.
[ ] I run out of energy sooner than most of my friends.
Now total the number of checks you have next to the first, second and third answers. If most of your checks are beside the first answers, you probably have what it takes to run a business. If not, you're likely to have more trouble than you can handle by yourself. Better find a partner who is strong on the points on which you are weak. If many of your checks are next to third answers, even a good partner will not be able to shore you up.