Here are ten essential steps for starting a business after you’re 40 years older, wiser, and saner; a road map for the journey to your future.

Bike under work sign
Javier Calvo

Ten essential steps to starting a business after 40 years old

Life looks different after you turn 40. And hopefully better. If you’ve ever wanted to enjoy the independence and fulfillment that comes from starting, owning, and running your own business, here are the ten steps you need to take.

  1. Take the time to identify what you’re good at. Be clear and specific. Enlist the help of others you trust.
  2. Take the time to identify what you enjoy doing. Be honest with yourself.
  3. Look around to identify a need among a particular group or class of people, activities, businesses or entities. Be thorough in your research.
  4. Determine where lies the intersection between what you’re good at, what you enjoy, and a product or service you could provide to fill the need above. Get creative here.
  5. Create an avatar of your specific customers from Step 3. Be detailed and specific. It will focus your efforts later.
  6. Create a plan or platform (e.g., a website or other online presence or brick and mortar location) for reaching those customers and marketing your product/service to them. Be detailed but flexible. You may need to change course (see Step 9).
  7. Find a mentor you can trust and work with or learn from to support your efforts; whether it be someone close to you, a professional for hire, a published author, a community of like-minded people, or some combination of the above. Keep learning.
  8. Launch your business and execute on your plan as consistently as possible.
  9. Correct your course as you execute, learn, and identify knowledge or activity gaps you must fill. Wise up, don’t give up!
  10. Patiently stay the course to profitability. Revisit this list regularly to refocus and refine your efforts.

Not saying it’s easy. Each step comes with challenges and rewards. But follow this blueprint with persistence and perseverance and you will succeed. It’s never too late.

Optional follow up: Help others to do what you’ve done!

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