Transitioning from military service to civilian life takes a 360 turn when you’re thinking about your career.
Rather than applying to another company for work, many transitioned veterans start their own business and have been very successful in it.
Take, for example, companies like Nike, GoDaddy, FedEx, and Walmart. These are all owned by veterans who served in the Marine Corps, Air Force, or Army Reserve.
The training and experience in service poised them to entrepreneurship. A lot of successful veterans even attribute their business success from their experience in the military.
Like all business ventures, however, it takes a lot of groundwork. In this article, we’re giving you some business ideas and a quick guide to starting your business.
Business Ideas for Veterans
Veterans have their hands in almost every sector of the business, including health care, transportation, and even healthcare.
It’s important as an entrepreneur to recognize your skillset and knowledge base and turn those into a profitable business idea.
You can find a lot of websites and blogs dedicated to veterans from support, and housing help, music blogs for the military community, news and information, and many more.
As a retired army, you can also blog about a veteran life, including how it is being on the front line. Blogs like 20 Year Letter and Transitioning Veteran are examples of this. Familiarizing yourself with writing tools for blogging is a good start.
You can also use your military experience to conduct self-defense training or survival and outdoor training.
You can even hold your own extreme adventure trips for people to join for a fee.
The list is endless with business ideas.
Step-by-Step Guide for Starting a Business
Write a Business Plan
Every business should start out with an idea that you develop until you make it as detailed as possible. Once you get a full plan of your business, the first thing you should do is to create a business plan.
A business plan should include an executive summary that summarizes your business for future investors to learn more about your business. It should also enlist the products or services that you will offer.
It is also important that you identify your target customers. You can put this in the market analysis section of your business plan.
The business plan should also include the cost and pricing, and the projected income that will be useful information for investors to look at.
When you create an organized business plan, it increases your chances of succeeding as an entrepreneur. It becomes easier to run your business, set your goals, and identify whether you are on the right track or you need to improve on some areas.
With a detailed roadmap, you can attract investors and get loans from the banks as they know the business has been well planned out.
As a veteran, you also have more incentives and funding options than a civilian entrepreneur.
Some funding options that you have include crowdfunding where you get investments instead of loans, business, and private loans, and federal grants.
For personal loans, you can check out the Navy Federal Credit Union, USAA, PenFed Credit Union among others.
To get on the right foot, you should register your business as a government contractor. As a veteran, you are already familiar or have already made connections with the state government.
When you file your business, you have the option to register it as an LLC, a partnership, or a corporation.
Education and Mentorship
Starting a business is not an easy feat. And one may need to seek professional advice on how to run it.
There are plenty of organizations that offer veterans help with connecting to business professionals and mentors.
Some veteran entrepreneurs even go back to school or take management courses to learn about business.
You can also attend training to know areas about the business before you start with your own.
Get Your Team Ready
Aside from these steps, you need to figure out a system for paying suppliers, and even a payroll system for your employees.
If you’re not hiring regular employees, it’s a good idea to look for contractors to help your business operate.
Promote Your Business
As the last step, you need to let people know about your business. Creating a website can be a good idea to reach a wider audience.