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The three P's for business success

Passion. Persistence. Planning.

According to research, more than 50 percent of people have thought about starting their own business at some point in their lives. The Small Business Bureau stated in 2008 there were an estimated 650,000 business starts and more new business start-ups are estimated in 2009 and 2010 with the weak economy.

Yet with all the information available for starting a business, it remains difficult to have a business survive through the first difficult years. Of all of the tips and ideas offered, the following elements may be the most necessary for business success.

Glenn Muske, Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension interim associate dean, assistant director, family and consumer sciences, said there are no guarantees that a start-up business will succeed.

"There are a lot of helpful agencies and Web sites that provide tips and ideas on how to increase the chances of success in your new business," Muske said. "Your local Cooperative Extension office, as well as fcs.okstate.edu and extension.org, provides valuable information."

Muske said there are three underlying key elements that seem to be necessary in order for a business to succeed. These include: passion, persistence and planning.

"The fire for and belief in your budding enterprise is the passion one needs to get started," he said. "Starting a business takes lots of resources, not cash all the time. Ask any business owner and you will hear stories of challenges and obstacles he faced. Most of the challenges can be overcome, but it takes time and creativity to find the solutions."

Muske said even the best idea will end in failure if the business owner is not willing to put in all they have all the time.

The second "P" is persistence. This is the need to keep that passion over time, the need to stay focused and the need not to give in when it seems like everything and everyone is a roadblock.

"Planning is the last 'P' and is an important element because without planning, many ideas fail when the original idea is flawed, poorly considered and poorly executed," Muske said. "Ask some basic questions--will anyone buy the product, and if they will buy it, will it be at a price you can make money?"

Understand who your likely client is and where they are located, develop a grid of who the competition is and how their product or service differs from yours. State the benefits of your product and service.

"Most new businesses have a chance at success," Muske said. "However, the more you practice these habits the greater the likelihood you will be in a business tomorrow and for time to come. I have seen businesses succeed when many others would have failed because of the owner's commitment to these practices. Remember, it doesn't take a great idea--it takes a good idea with passion, persistence and planning on your part."



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