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With so much competition in the field today, being an entrepreneur has never been so difficult. Only the best ideas thrive and turn into thriving and successful businesses. Yet entrepreneurs also have more opportunities than ever to compete on an equal footing with more established brands. These opportunities range from coworking spaces to productivity tools, via outsourced HR and accounting options.
Related: 7 Tips for Creating Your Own Coworking Space
Let’s look at seven of the industries that have helped boost modern entrepreneurship.
1. Coworking spaces
We’ve all heard stories like Steve Jobs founding Apple in his parents’ garage, or Mark Zuckerberg starting Facebook from his Harvard dorm. But more recently, the first step for many entrepreneurs has been to set up in a local coworking space.
In cities around the world, independent and networked coworking spaces are full of entrepreneurs who work hard on their latest and best ideas. Many of these spaces are think tanks that create important links between and among future business partners, and collaborations that can create the next generation of amazing businesses.
Other more established small business owners, on the other hand, can recruit and use talent around the world by virtually collaborating with these employees – and providing them with a co-working space allowance instead of an office. home.
With thousands of local and independent co-working spaces, national global chains like Regus and WeWork have fueled the global startup scene by adding member-based co-working sites and key office space in hand in more and more cities around the world.
2. Work productivity tools
Whether it’s coworking spaces, cafes or the beaches of Bali, more and more entrepreneurs have “become mobile” by finding ways to manage their businesses from anywhere in the world. Depending on the industry and the type of business, many small business owners need only a laptop computer and a solid Internet connection to maintain their productivity.
Increasingly, this means that even large teams are able to do their job without being in the same place. Workplace communication tools like Slack and HipChat help team members communicate wherever they are. File sharing resources like Dropbox and Google Drive allow teams to collaborate on documents without being on the same network. And project management tools like Asana or Trello help entrepreneurs to move their projects and their teams forward simply and efficiently.
3. Small business loans
There was a time when it was almost impossible for a beginning entrepreneur to borrow funds for his business. The local bank was the only source available for a loan, and most banks only approved applications from established companies with strong credit histories.
In the past five years, however, the alternative lending industry has exploded to provide more borrowing opportunities for entrepreneurs than ever before. Online lenders offer a variety of loan products to meet almost every business need. As a result, entrepreneurs are more often able to follow through on their best ideas without being held back by financial difficulties.
Related: 16 productivity tools useful for every entrepreneur
4. Venture capital
Other companies that need financing may choose to turn to venture capital firms, which help make small businesses industry leaders by using a combination of investment financing and expertise. strategic.
If you have a good idea, but need more than cash to take your business to the next level, hundreds of angel investors and venture capitalists are ready to help new businesses do the trick. jump. Remember: it takes a lot of work to get VC funding.
5. Outsourced HR
As an entrepreneur starting a very small business, you are often an individual spectacle. In addition to the actual work of building your business, you are also the receptionist, the accountant, the marketing manager and – yes – the human resources manager.
But there is no greater buzzkill for an entrepreneur’s big ideas than wading through health insurance paperwork or managing a payroll. These tasks are confusing, time consuming and just plain exhausting. Fortunately, a handful of impressive companies have arrived to make it easier than ever to manage employee needs.
Companies like Zenefits and Justworks will manage the paperwork and benefit processes for your employees, leaving you with a manageable interface. While Gusto – formerly Zenpayroll – has recently joined the ranks of outsourced services, the company also provides easy-to-manage payroll services for employees who easily integrate with common accounting software.
In addition, if you have spent too many Saturday evenings sorting the time cards of your hourly employees, TSheets can help you. And if you have a retail business or restaurant that relies on shift workers, check out WhenIWork to make planning a breeze.
6. Accounting software
Among the many learning curves faced by a first entrepreneur, there is perhaps no more intimidating than learning to manage “the books”. Not only are there hundreds of rules, including foreign ones, to follow, but properly managed accounting establishes, there, in black and white, the details of the success or failure of your business.
Fortunately, a multitude of accounting software solutions are available that any entrepreneur can understand. Tools like Quickbooks, Wave, Xero and Freshbooks make it easier than ever, even for the poorest entrepreneurs, to keep accurate accounts.
7. Social media and analysis tools
The new world of social media has created a direct avenue for business owners to identify qualified prospects and connect with their potential customers. Of course, generating quality content to connect with potential customers is a time-consuming process, and with billions of people communicating about different products and services, a business will have a hard time identifying and hearing specific customers. what they have to say.
This need has spawned a growing industry of social media planning, listening and analysis tools created to help businesses communicate with their consumers. Tools like Buffer, Hootsuite and SproutSocial help businesses plan their interactions with customers online and are of great help to entrepreneurs who need help finding and connecting with their audience.
Although these seven industries are diverse and the services they provide are numerous, all of them have in common their offer of a tangible advantage that gives entrepreneurs back their most precious resource: time.
Because every minute an entrepreneur does not going on to reinvent the wheel of loan applications, health insurance documents or accounting spreadsheets is another minute that these entrepreneurs can devote to the overview of their most important mission: their business.
Related: 18 Effective Social Media Tools That Save You Time