It may seem impossible to add “starting a business” to an already long list of tasks that the college student tackles on a daily basis. However, the benefits of creating a business while still enrolled in a university are practically endless include learning valuable skills such as time management and business communication. Students who are interested in starting a business should be prepared for the amount of work and determination it will take.
But with this hard work comes a long list of rewarding experiences that will aid their success in the future. If you’re considering starting a business in your first or second year of Northeastern’s online mba, keep reading for some valuable tips.
- Use All AvailableResources
It is likely that there will never be a time when such a plethora of free resources are available at your disposal than in college. Professors and advisors in the fields of marketing, business, accounting, law, communication and more are all present on campus and eager to help students.
Also important to note are the technology resources available. Printers, computers, reliable Wi-Fi and an IT Department bored out of their minds are completely accessible and cost nothing!
- Get Connected to Entrepreneurship Activities
Many colleges and universities offer entrepreneurial classes in their business school as well as mock interviews, career fairs, panels and competitions as well as guest speakers and pitch meetings.
When choosing courses, take the time to research your professor’s background and the planned syllabus. If the teacher has experience as an entrepreneur or specifically touches on the mandatory steps to starting a business, sign up!
- Build a Strong Business Model
Before you start spending money, building websites and hiring fellow colleges students as interns, make sure you really hone in on your business model. What exactly do you want to do? What will this service or product provide for your target audience? How do you plan to track goals and growth?
Building a business also means taking strong ownership from the beginning. Buy the domain name, copyright and/or trademark quickly so that you are protected from the start.
- Prioritize, Prioritize, Prioritize
One of the most valuable skills you will gain as a college student and business owner is proper time management. Make a to-do list every morning with your most important tasks at the top followed by smaller or less important responsibilities. Lay out a schedule every day that allows time not only for studying, courses and business brainstorming but also proper breaks, meals and exercise.
- Understand and Test Your Audience
Luckily, being in college gives you immediate access to hundreds of different people to test your product or service on. Really talk to students, professors and faculty to find out what they think about your business. Is it something they would actually use or buy? What age demographic is your target audience? Can your product or service be used by anyone?