Thank you. I do come from family in a very comfortable financial position, however I do not feel comfortable borrowing or partnering with them. My father believes in being self made and I tend to agree that the struggle makes you appreciate things more. I struggled through my mid 20's and then got into IT and landed a systems admin job. After close to a decade, my wife and I had a comfortable lifestyle. Losing my job last month has turned things upside down for me and I'm just reaching out everywhere looking into ideas.
At this point, I am going to start a consulting business and try to grow it to a point of being comfortable again. I've been a systems admin for the last 12 years and feel confident in helping businesses get their IT side established as well has help the common person with computer problems. I did some contract consulting work 7-8 years ago and enjoyed it. I just need to register a business name, write a business plan, open a business checking account, and figure out how to get my name out there to get some business in the area.
In the future, my wife and I would like to open a high end pet boutique or franchise off of one already in business. We are involved in the dog show world and have 4 dogs of our own, so it seems natural to start a business dealing with something we are both passionate about.
If anyone has ideas on how to churn up local business, I'm all ears. I appreciate those taking the time to comment no matter good or bad. Criticism helps everyone learn and grow.
I think you are on to something IT consultants can do quite well. You are right getting your name out there is going to be key for you. Since you have a limited budget and I have to assume you are just as happy to be paid your hourly rate from anyone who wants your service why not start at a grassroots level. Get some business cards right away and starting telling everyone you know about your new venture. Go the post offices and supermarkets in your area and place them on the bullitein boards.
Place free ads on any of the online classified sites you can. Consider Google
marketing. Create a Google ad for yourself and limit it to your geographical area. Put together a thoughtful website that is at first quite limited. Think carefully about the website name. Try to incorporate a search term in the URL that has high organic search value as conasted to something clever or your name.
The above should keep you busy for the next day or two. Good Luck!