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The order of things…

What to do first and why!

Over the past decade I have either set up myself, or helped set up numerous businesses in the State of Wisconsin.  If done correctly it’s a simple task that sets up the administrative blueprint for your company.  If not set up correctly it may be costly and time consuming – not the way you want to start off your new business.  While you don’t necessarily need an accountant to perform these tasks, it may behoove you to seek someone like myself out when setting up your business.  A little out of pocket costs up front can save you hundreds of dollars and a lot of frustration later on.

There are a series of simple tasks to be done when you start up a business, this post and much shorter ones to follow, will give you the chronological order of items to be done, and why they should be done in this particular order.  Before anything is “officially” done, you first must plan, brainstorm and plan some more the many attributes of starting up a business – the administrative side.

I can not stress enough the importance of planning the administrative side of starting up a business.  Most business owners spend a ton of time with the business idea, how to build it, how to sell it, how to market it, but just about the time the owner should write a killer business plan (which has all of the just mentioned items AND the administrative items as well), things start to fall apart.  Everyone is anxious to get out there and start selling, but a few simple tasks done correctly up front will get you off on the right foot.

Here is my list, in specific order, of items that must be done to set up your business:

  • Planning the business
  • Naming/Branding the business
  • Type of Entity
  • LLC Procedure
  • Federal ID# (FEIN) or not?
  • Checking Account
  • State of Wisconsin Registration
  • Sales Tax Issues – Seller’s Permit
  • Accounting considerations

Long before the first administrative form is filled out, planning must be done to insure a smooth start up.  As I wrote in an earlier post -

What is a business?

some business owners start a business without knowing they have done so!  For the sake of this and those posts to come shortly I will assume that you have a legitimate business idea or plan, want to make a profit, and want to record your income and expense transactions correctly.

Another early planning stage item is naming.  The name of your business is huge – to some this is obvious, to others, please read:

What’s in a name?

Over the next several blog posts, I will go into greater detail of each of these remaining steps in starting up your business.

I feel like that old Charter Hospital commercial that aired in Milwaukee years ago, “If you don’t get help from Charter, get help somewhere”.  If you don’t get help (starting up your business – administratively) from Customized Business Services, LLC, get help somewhere!


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