Upskilling to Launch Your Startup

Latest posts by Rachel MacDonald (see all)

Upskilling: Learning new skillsets

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When launching a startup, you’ll need to focus not only on creating an excellent product or providing a useful service. Becoming a business owner requires a whole new skill set, requiring you to become a jack of all trades as you build your startup from the ground floor up. As you start creating an initial budget and a mountain of to-do lists, you might want to fit the time and cost required for upskilling in there. Investing in your skill set can pay off later when you’re able to handle the challenges of operating a business without any outside help! Here are a few areas where all business owners could stand to brush up on their skills.

5 Skills to Consider

1. Web Design and IT

An online presence is practically mandatory for any new startup. Although you could outsource your initial web design to an outside company, it doesn’t hurt to know a few IT basics so that you can manage it yourself. Learning web design terminology and a bit of basic coding can also help you describe what you want more accurately, increasing the chance that you’ll be happy with the outcome.

2. Financial Planning

If you’ve already secured a business loan or lined up investors to give you some startup cash, congratulations – you’re ahead of the game! However, it’s important to know what to do with the large sum sitting in your bank account. If you don’t have the financial planning skills in place to create a budget and learn how to maximize these funds, you could run through them in a shockingly brief time period. Even if you’re a real wiz kid when it comes to balancing your personal checking account, creating a budget for a business is different. Take the time to invest in a financial planning course so that you can crunch the numbers honestly and accurately.

3. Bookkeeping and Accounting

Along these same lines, you’ll need to have a solid accounting plan in place before you even spend a dime of that cash. Be prepared to track all the money coming in and going out, right from the start, and create accurate year-end reports for tax purposes. Fortunately, there are now a number of bookkeeping apps and software to help you with this task, but it doesn’t hurt to brush up on the basics.

4. Project Management

You can look at your business as one large project, but the road to success will come with many smaller projects along the way. Your ability to create and delegate tasks, identify your primary goals, and break large tasks into small, achievable steps is important. Learn how to manage your time, budget, and staff members to meet the majority of your goals more efficiently.

5. Marketing and Sales

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Whether or not you’re selling retail products, some degree of sales savvy is important when starting a new business. You’ll need to be able to toot your own horn to find clients, investors, and customers in the early stages of your new business, often without any assistance. If you hate asking for money, this can be one of the most difficult skills to master. Fortunately, sales and marketing courses exist that can help you learn some new strategies to practice, and as your business grows your confidence will too.

The Bottom Line

Investing in these areas now can save you money in the long run, particularly if you’re founding a startup with a skeleton crew at first. Feeling competent in areas like marketing, financial planning, and basic internet savvy can help you boost profits and achieve your goals, making upskilling well worth the investment

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