This is part 4 of my blog recording the count down to setting up my own business. Part 1 can be found here Part 2 can be found here and Part three here
Today's post considers what type of business we are going to be. For a small business there are really four options:
For the second two the rules are not so complex, though adequate records need to be kept. National Insurance is class 2 and 4. There are also differences about how losses can be offset.
Two rusty wheels
Having considered all the options, and going through all four of them over the last four months, we have finally decided on a Partnership. One of the other advantages of the last two options is that it is much easier to change status from 4 to 1 rather than the other way round.
Two worker bees
Not that I think of the partnership as a pair of old rusty wheels rather more a pair of slick worker bees as can be seen here.
Now having made decided what we are going to trade as we can now finish our business plan.
This is part 3 of my blog recording the count down to setting up my own business. Part 1 can be found here and part 2 can be found here
Today's post is all about celebration as I have passed the pne “Start your own business course” and got my certificate of achievement to stick on the wall. 8 weeks of blood sweat and tears!!!!
In fact it was a very interesting and useful course taken by some knowledge lecturers, especially Melissa Middleton the course leader.
Now the real work starts and I have to finish off my financial (guesses) forecasts – cash flow, sales, profit and loss etc. for the business plan allowing me to finish off the plan. So that is my next goal get the plan finished. Then I will be able to sort out a bank account. Along with all the 101 things that are coming along. Oh what fun..
But I do need to make sure I have time to enjoy the fantastic weather as well.
This is part 2 of my blog recording the count down to setting up my own business. Part 1 can be found here.
The subject for this weeks business start-up course was business accounts, or maths as the lecturer Melissa Middleton kept informing us. I happen to like maths and am generally quite good at it, and was rather upset that I got the final National Insurance calculation wrong. I suppose I did have the excuse that it was late in the evening and I was tired and hungry. This is a good warning that doing such things as cash flow forecasts and profit and loss calculations should not be done when too tired as it is so easy to make mistakes
Earlier on in the day I had had a review of our Business Plan – where currently at and what needs more thinking, especially the figures. The joke is that it is like looking in a crystal ball that is totally opaque, rather than a cloud in a reflection.
Still life moves on even if it is only at snails pace – role on next week more figures. Hopefully by then I will have this new version of the Business Plan almost finished – all ready for my visit to the bank. No doubt there will be more on that in further posts.
The observant follower may have noticed that over the last few weeks there have been less entries in my blog. This is not because I have forgotten about it, but I have not had time to write anything. In fact I am now two book reviews behind!! You are probably thinking to yourself – what has he been doing to be so busy. Well sadly one of the things is trundling up and down the motorway to the Midlands, helping sorting out my brother Stephen’s estate. The other is working on my new business plans.
Yes the current plan is to have our new business venture up and running by the start of May 2012. As part of the planning process for this I am going weekly to business start-up course being run by the pne group at the city library – the lecturer is Melissa Middleton
She is very good at keeping us awake and interested even when all we want to do is go home, get some tea and put our feet up rather than thinking about our new business plans. The course runs for 8 weeks and briefly covers all different aspects of business planning. Now half way through the course I thought it would be good to record the process to my business launch. I am sure in the future I will look back at this with feeling- quite what that feeling will be depends on how things turn out. Anyway hopefully I will try and document the next few weeks and record them as a weekly update.
A Jumbled Mess
There is some form of process that the mind goes through when transferring a idea or thought down on paper. It means that the idea becomes fixed and recorded at that point in time. The process of writing a business plan makes sure that this is carried out for the business idea. Having committed the words to the plan, it can then further discussed and reviewed, trying to turn the jumbled mess of ideas into an ordered state.
The ultimate feedback loop record => review => refine is being carried out.
Our business plans have gone through this process. Prior to committing them to paper they have been knocked around for about 6 months The first version of the plan was written following a template from a bank. It was used in several initial discussions, and helped me realise that it would be helpful to go on a course (all be it refresher for me as I have run a business before – a decade ago) to improve our plans.
The pne course has provided lots of resources, including a different business plan template. As it ties in with the course then this is the one we are currently working on. Each session in the course covers different areas of business planning and practice, challenging us to put into practice or update our business plans with what we have learnt that week.
The last session was on legal issues. We had a guest speaker Peter Millican the principle of Peter Millican Law http://www.petermillicanlaw.co.uk/ covering the different types of business models. What a brilliant speaker, covering complex issues in a clear and easy to understand manner. This was quite a challenge for me as until then I had thought I was going to set up a limited company, but probably this will be changed to a limited partnership. I did not fully realise that limited partnerships existed before then, nor did I quite realise the complexity of employment regulations that come into play as a limited company. Compliance with these seem a real hindrance to setting up a small company.
So the ideas get refined, and the business plan gets a re-write and the picture becomes clearer.
Role on next week – what is going to have to be changed then?
Dyslexic doodles on photography, food (growing, cooking & of course eating), faith and other fascinating things. This is a personal blog expressing my views.