Moving – The one thing we know for sure in the military is that inevitably, we will get orders to move somewhere. The constant moves can make it difficult to keep a career going. Even if you do have a job or skills that are transferable, you must still start over at the new location with new bosses, new coworkers and often a new pay scale. Have you ever thought about starting a business that would move with you? How about starting a business based on the things you love to do, and for the people you want to help?
It’s not only possible, but now is the BEST time to start a PCS-proof business. We’re living in such a technologically-advanced time, where it’s possible to operate a business with only a computer and a smart phone. I launched my first business four years ago after getting fed up with starting my career over at every new duty station. I worked in television for eight years, moving from station to station wherever the military sent us. It was great in the beginning, because wherever we moved, there was always a television station where I could work; however, I still had to interview, land the job, negotiate the pay, and essentially start over with every single move. I was working long hours and didn’t have the flexibility to take off every time my husband’s ship pulled in, making it so frustrating when he would actually be home and I couldn’t take the time off. Then, when I was pregnant with our first son, we had a deployment coming up and a PCS looming. I had always wanted to start my own business and I figured it was now or never – So, I quit. At nine months pregnant I launched my first company, a marketing firm, without even having a website. Since then, I’ve launched two other businesses and several websites. I’ve been bitten by the entrepreneurial bug and I love it.
Here’s how you can create your own PCS-Proof Business in 6 simple steps:
Step 1: Discover your strengths.
In order to build a business you love, it’s so important to truly identify your gifts, strengths and areas of expertise. What is it you love to talk about? What do you like to do? What topics do your friends ask you about? What type of experiences have you had that could help someone else? When you can identify your strengths, you can then figure out how to take all of those elements you enjoy, package them up, and put them into a product or service that can help others.
Step 2: Identify Your Ideal Customer
Every truly successful business starts with the customer in mind first. Who is it you want to impact? To whom do you want to sell your products and services? This is going to be your target market. Clearly determine the people you want to work with and keep them in mind as you develop your products and services.
Step 3: Determine what type of business you want to start.
This step is crucial in determining whether your business will be PCS-proof. Do you want to sell physical products, offer services, create digital products (like video training programs), or do you want to do blogging as a business? Will your business have an online storefront? Brick and mortar storefronts are not good ideas for work-from-anywhere type of businesses. If you are in the physical-product business, can you easily ship your products? If you offer services, are you restricted to only one geographical location, or can you offer those services anywhere? You’ll want to make sure that the type of business you start, can move with you.
Step 4: Decide what you will offer.
The next step is to decide on your offerings and come up with a product plan. Let’s say you offer services; will you offer three different pricing levels for your customers to choose from? If you make a physical product, how many will you offer, what colors, styles, how much can you sell it for and still make a profit? Always keep your ideal customer in mind when coming up with your offerings. Your products or services need to solve a problem or meet a need for your ideal customers.
Step 5: Market research like a pro.
When you’re coming up with your business idea, it’s important to get the right feedback so you know whether your products and services are going to be something that people will purchase. You don’t just want to ask anyone, remember that ideal customer we talked about in Step 2? Find out where your ideal customers hang out online, what social media sites are they on, what kind of groups are they in, what kind of blogs do they read? What kinds of problems or issues do they have, that you can solve? Go talk to them. Create an online survey or poll. Reach out on social media and get feedback on your idea. Ask a trusted friend, as long as they fit your ideal customer.
Step 6: Make an action plan.
This is the most important part of starting your PCS-proof business. It’s time to take action. Do something every day to move forward to starting your own business. Get to brainstorming, research potential names for your business, see if the domain names are available online, or call up a friend and ask them what they think. Take it one step further to determining the type of PCS-proof business you would want to start.
If you need more help deciding what type of PCS Proof business you want to start, check out my FREE video series + The Ultimate List of PCS Proof Business ideas here.
Have a great day!