Thursday, June 3, 2010

Values, Insurance, and Market Analysis

Yes, three things when written together make you go "Hmmmmm..."

As I continued work on the business case yesterday, one of the things I did was review my lists of start-up costs/categories and monthly costs/categories. I realized that I had not gotten a cost estimate on one of those things we have to have (but always dread) - insurance! My financial advisor (who is also the provider of my life insurance) had told me when I discussed my plans with him earlier this year to contact him when I was ready to talk business insurance. Well, I'm ready! I asked him for a ballpark on Workers Compensation insurance, General Liability Insurance, and Property/Casualty. I also made a list of potential calamities (Fire, Flood, Theft, Fraud, Hurricane, different lawsuits) that could be visited upon the business.

I also spent some focused time working on my list of values for the business - what do I want it to be - what characteristics are important in defining it, how I conduct it, the kind of people I hire. That was a fun and interesting exercise that allowed me to jot down a lot of ideas and crystallize my vision.

Next came an exercise where I specified the types of goods and services the business will provide. It also helped me note areas where I won't provide service (such as alterations) but need to find a good reference for those shopping in my store who may wish to have something altered.

Being the "check box" sort of person that I am, I made a list of the key dates/events that have occurred thus far and what is next on the list. Finally, I started my focus on the market analysis portion of the business plan, using information from the website

Courtesy of my friend Tim McCrosson, I also wanted to provide a link to a feature on WAMU radio from yesterday, titled "Alexandria Retailers Hope Bloggers Can Bring in Local Shoppers" -

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