The start-up stage is an exciting time for entrepreneurs. We get to dive in and work long hours, focusing on getting our company up to speed. We are looking for angles to increase our sales and to develop our team.

Paying attention to the business plan is critical at this stage as many entrepreneurs and teams will want to go for the shiny object. Patience is of the utmost importance. Stick with your plan and you will be in a better position.

Test everything, compare the results and make adjustments accordingly. If you don't understand what the cost of your transaction is, this would be a great time to find out. Look at it from every angle you can. Base your analysis on the customer, the season, the sales person, the vendor, the location and any other way you can look at the transaction. This will allow you to maximize your profit potential.

Look for ways to enhance your product / service without adding additional expense. You might be able to provide better information to your customers and increase your ability to charge more for your service. Creating a service guide informing your customer of each step of the process will help you to bring a premium dollar amount.

If you are not profitable, you should be communicating with potential investors, making them ready should you wish to acquire more capital for your business. Hopefully it won't be necessary, but if it is, you will be glad you pursued the relationships.