6 Steps to Becoming an Entrepreneur in the Charles River Area Without a Degree

Maybe you’re still in high school, or perhaps you’re simply entering the workforce without a college degree. You might be wondering which career paths are open to you. Thankfully, you don’t need a business degree to become an entrepreneur! In the article that follows, the Charles River Regional Chamber discusses the steps for laying out a roadmap to launching a business without a degree, including registering for LLC status, getting started with content marketing, and organizing your documents.


Gain Relevant Experience


First, it’s important to gain some work experience in positions that don’t require a degree. You may want to work for a year or two in a field that you’re interested in as a contractor or employee. To land your first job, FiscalTiger recommends aiming for entry-level positions and asking around your network for opportunities. You could also look into freelance openings - many companies that work with freelancers aren’t necessarily concerned with what degrees you hold. They would rather see your portfolio!


Find a Mentor


As you start getting some experience under your belt, look for a mentor who understands the ins and outs of your chosen industry. Ideally, you’ll want to find a mentor who occupies a leadership position - they can pass on valuable wisdom that you can apply as an entrepreneur. To connect with a mentor, Together recommends looking within your workplace and beyond. You can talk to your friends and relatives to see if any business owners you know would be interested in mentoring you.


Design Your Business Plan


You’ve reached a point where you’re confident that you can apply your work experience to an entrepreneurial venture. Many people without degrees start successful businesses in the trades, creative industries, food and beverage sector, tourism industry, and other niches. 


To get started, you’ll need a business plan. After writing your executive summary, Accion Opportunity Fund recommends detailing your offerings, a market analysis, your budget and financial projections, and your general sales and marketing strategy.


Choose a Business Structure


As you outline your business plan, you can also research different formal structures to determine which one is best for your company. Many first-time entrepreneurs running small businesses choose to register their companies as LLCs. While you could hire a lawyer to lend you a hand with filing, going through an online formation service is generally considerably less expensive. There are state-specific formation regulations for starting an LLC in Massachusetts, so make sure to comply with these specific rules.


Market Your Products and Services


Marketing should be a cornerstone of any business strategy, especially if you’ve just launched your company! Content marketing is a fantastic way to create and distribute engaging, informative materials for your audience. You’ll be able to build credibility within your niche and boost sales in the long run. If you’re unfamiliar with content marketing, you can learn the basics here.


Keep Your Paperwork Organized


Staying organized can be challenging even for experienced entrepreneurs. By storing and categorizing your documents within a digital system, you’ll always be able to find the files you need. If you’ve saved your digitized documents as PDFs, you can use a PDF editing tool to revise them without converting the files. Just upload it to the editor, make any necessary changes, and download it again.


Regardless of your educational background, you can become an entrepreneur. It’s not about possessing a certain qualification - it’s about your skill set and business sense. With these tips, you’ll be ready to register your company, market your offerings, and stay organized.


The Charles River Regional Chamber is committed to helping our community’s entrepreneurs build thriving businesses. Join us today!