Getting started with a startup is difficult work, but you can go from the idea stage to a full-blown functional enterprise in as little as four steps.
When you're toying around with the idea stage of a potential startup, it may seem impossible that one day you'll eventually be executing that idea as a formally established company. Many potential entrepreneurs have failed to follow through on their initial ideas only because they're intimidated by the amount of work that comes with creating something tangible.
But entrepreneurship has evolved. The fast pace and immediate availability of resources in the modern world mean that even speculative entrepreneurs have a better shot at eventually developing a functioning, if not profitable, company. Even if you're in the earliest stages of idea development, the core of your startup could be as little as four steps away:
1. Research. While your idea is still soft and malleable, start doing as much research as you can. Look at similar ideas that have taken off or failed. Look at your major competitors. Look at your target market and learn whether they would be receptive to your idea.
2. Create a Business Plan. Once you have your research more or less complete (though research is never truly complete), start working on a business plan. Your business plan is going to be the single most important document you have in creating, expanding, and running your business. Check out some of the most important rules for building a stellar business plan here.
3. Attract Investors. With a business plan created, you'll be in a good position to start attracting investors. Look for angel investor communities or use a crowdfunding platform to start gathering capital to fund your business.
4. Assemble a Team. When you finally have a business plan and some capital to back your idea up, start building a rockstar team. Look for team members with talent more than team members with experience. You need passionate people above all else.
These four steps aren't necessarily easy, but once they're complete, you'll be well on your way to running a complete, established company.
Jose Vasquez is a serial entrepreneur and tech enthusiast dedicated to helping startup technology companies get the direction and momentum they need to succeed. As the founder of Build. Brand. Blast., Jose has established a collective resource for tech entrepreneurs to consult when brainstorming, creating, launching, or expanding a new business. Jose is also the founder and CEO of Quez Media Marketing, a marketing firm that combines technology and creativity to help new and growing companies get the results they need.
Jose graduated from Goldman Sachs' 10,000 Small Businesses program. Goldman Sachs is a partner of the What Is Working: Small Businesses section.