First steps

The first steps in your self-employment

You have completed your journey into self-employment. Have you registered your business, or are you about to? This is a big milestone – well done! Many hurdles only appear once you really get started. To ensure you are not suddenly inundated with questions and requests from various authorities, it is important to keep up-to-date with your business’ accounts and plans. Ideally, you should seek professional advice, e.g. from an accountant and other professionals.Look at our page on support services, or head to your local business development organisation or chamber to find out about the advice and training available. In certain cases, you can arrange for subsidised business coaching. Business networking groups and other opportunities to meet other business owners and discuss different aspects of running a business can also be really useful.

Your first weeks of self-employment

During the first weeks of your self-employment, it is important that you ask yourself the following questions on a regular basis:

  • What do my plans look like for the past and next month?
  • Is the projected revenue correct? Am I meeting my targets?
  • Am I managing my books correctly, or do I need to find an accountant?
  • What are the gaps in my knowledge, and what would help me to run my business?
  • When do I need to make which payments? Which authorities are expecting information or payments from me, and when?

As a business owner, you must constantly look at and revise your offering, make your own decisions, keep abreast of the latest market developments and, in some cases, develop new offers. You need to plan sufficient time and professional support for this from the beginning.

Build your network!

A network is the contact or social interaction between you and other people, groups, organisations or companies. It is very helpful to start building a professional network right from day one. Many questions that arise during the day-to-day running of your business can be easily answered by asking a fellow professional. You can benefit from the experiences and knowledge of other business owners. There are often opportunities to collaborate to save money or to gain new customers in a more targeted manner. People in your network will also be able to tell you about new things happening in your local area, and you can gain access to committees. You can build your network by attending trade events such as start-up days or business networking events. Take a look at the various events and groups in your region. Some business owners also raise awareness through their work in the community. There are also special networks for entrepreneurs that can support you with advice, information, qualifications, coaching, contacts or the exchange of experiences. Networks for entrepreneurs in your area can be found on the entrepreneur portal. You can find out more about networks on our page Professional network.