Running an equine business takes a great deal of planning, patience and understanding. While most equine businesses are ran by horse-loving people with a desire to enhance the horse industry, a solid understanding of business principles is also necessary in order to be successful. So, loving and understanding horses is not enough, it is important and helpful, but not enough.
There are many ways that one may acquire the business knowledge necessary to be successful in the horse industry. Depending on what type of learner you are, what kind of budget you have and what type of business you are going to run, any one of these ideas will be appropriate. It may be that you choose a combination of ideas. A well-rounded knowledge base is always the best option. This will provide you with a solid understanding of business principles from different sources. Together they will give you the foundation from which to begin and expand your business.
General Business Courses
Many community colleges offer business classes through their business school. These courses are general but offer a plethora of information regarding planning and operating a small business. You will receive instruction on budgeting, licensing, insurance and liability, accounting procedures, marketing and fiscal management. For people who have never ran a business before, these courses are invaluable. Most colleges allow you to choose the courses that are of most value and may even offer online options to make learning easier.
Equine Management Courses
There are some equine schools that include courses specifically on equine management. The particulars of dealing with people in the horse world are great to learn before opening any equine business. These courses include much of what is learned in general business management classes but with an equine twist. Instructors are usually business minded equine professionals who know the ins and outs of working in the horse world. These classes are an excellent idea for people who are not familiar with horses or the horse industry. Marketing techniques, business start up, funding, and customer base development and liability issues specific to horses are some of the specifics that may be taught. These classes are sometimes even offered online to make studying easier.
Books and Magazines
If you are an avid reader, you will find a plethora of information on running a successful horse business in print. Many times, horse professionals have written books on managing businesses and share an immense amount of knowledge. It is a good idea to get several books written by different authors so that you gain a varied amount of ideas and opinions. Make notes as you read the books and pay attention to parts that are relevant to your desired business outcomes. Magazines also offer business related news that may be extremely useful for those looking at running an equine operation.
Note from Joni: Save money by making sure to check your local library for books, magazines, audios, and videos on running a business, horse businesses, starting a business, and marketing. You can also find some free ebooks online too. Also you can request items from other libraries and have them mailed to your local library!
Virtual Online Horse Game
Virtual horse games are a rather unsuspecting addition to the above list of resources. However, if you are an avid computer user, enjoy online fun and horses, there is much to be gained from playing these simulated games. Online game play has advanced tremendously and now includes a number of reality-based options that take the player from business inception through management. The games sometimes seem so real that it is as if you are really running your own equine operation. In some games, you are given a certain amount of capital to begin with and are expected to manage all aspects of a business and make a profit. Business decisions must be made that will impact your operation. Many games are free while others offer upgrades for a small fee. With upgrades, there is usually an opportunity to become more involved in the equine business. There is no shortage to the amount of information that can be learned while playing these games. Visit Virtual Horse Games to find a large selection of games and detailed reviews. Playing virtual horse games gives you the opportunity to get a glimpse of the horse business world without any risk, which helps to build the confidence you need to operate your own business.
If you are planning on starting an equine business, have you found this information helpful? If you already have a horse business let us know where you found helpful business information.