Majoring in the Minors

When you’re starting a business, it’s incredibly easy to get caught up in what I call “majoring in the minors.” What I mean by that is, you get so focused on the minor details of the business that you neglect the most crucial element for success – does this business concept work?

Don’t misunderstand me, “minor” details have an important place in business. Successful companies get every last detail fine tuned. But at the start, your energy needs to be focused on the viability of your product or service. Ask yourself questions like, “How will the market respond to this?” or “What will cause people to buy this product?” before you ask yourself, “Should I be an LLC or sole proprietor?”

Responsibilities such as filing your business license are not your first step. After all, what good is a business license if no one wants what you’re offering? There will be time later to buy your super expensive website. The most important resource for your energy to flow into is making your business viable. Don’t be afraid to change or tweak your business model to match what consumers want or need.

 I’ve personally witnessed more than one business that I thought had tremendous potential for success. But instead of the idea person hustling on the idea and starting to sell it, they got bogged down in the minors. They were good details, but not the best details. Important later – but not crucial at the start. And the opportunity slipped right past them. Rather than continuing to build on their momentum and craft a terrific company, they ended up paying lots of bills for websites, edits, logos, and samples that never got to market. They exerted a tremendous amount of time and energy on the minors before nailing down the majors.

So my advice to you is: if you’re thinking about starting a business, prioritize your steps and stages of growth. Don’t abandon the minor details but keep them on the back burner until it’s their time to shine. What’s important is to make certain your business concept works. If your business concept doesn’t work, there’s no point in doing the rest.

Start your business. Sell a product or a service. Find a customer base. Once that gets going, then start thinking about the infrastructure around it getting built. Obviously there are some exceptions to this. But largely I think people would be better served using their initial energy to make certain their idea is viable and that people will pay them for their product.