Do I Need A Qualification To Start A Business?

Need a qualification to start your own business

The short answer is (usually) no. However, although there isn’t a rule to say you need a qualification to start a business, those with formal education tend to see more success in the long run. By investing in your learning, you place yourself at the front of the pack both as a business owner and a leader in your organisation. The guiding support of a diploma or formal qualification can help you get closer to your dream business.

You may need to hold a qualification or other requirements to make your business compliant. These requirements vary from industry to industry and are dependent on what your business deals with. For example:

  • Accountants need to hold a CPA (Certified Practising Accountant).
  • Builders require a licence.
  • Practice managers often need to hold a medical diploma or higher such as a Diploma of Practice Management and a Diploma of Nursing. Depending on the business you’re starting, you may need to register as a nurse or with a medical association. 
  • Working with alcohol requires proper liquor licensing and a Responsible Service of Alcohol (RSA) certificate. 
  • Working with/caring for children requires a Working With Children check.

These requirements vary industry to industry and states and territories have different compliance criteria that you may need to meet. 

Will a qualification make me a better leader? 

A successful business owner has the knowledge and understanding to grow not only their business but also their team. The ability to demonstrate a range of important soft skills will push you to be a better leader. Some of the soft skills that are vital for business ownership include

  • Time management
  • Communication 
  • Problem-solving 
  • Teamwork 

Although these intangible skills can be difficult to develop, a Diploma of Leadership & Management (BSB50420) or similar will give you the skills to put your business on the road to success and give you the confidence to build and manage your team. Learning to strengthen these skills through formal training can also help your business grow as your team has more trust in you as a business owner. 


Can a qualification increase your earning potential?

According to research by ABS, people with a formal qualification on average earn more than those without any formal education. In fact, a VET qualification can potentially earn you more than an undergraduate or university qualification. Those who hold a vocational education qualification have a higher starting salary than university graduates and are more likely to find work quickly.

By combining theory, practice, and on-the-job knowledge, you demonstrate the value of your business to clients and build trust as an expert in your trade. This reinforces trust with clients, solidifying that you are the right go-to person in your industry. In turn, perceived expertise can bring more clients (and money) to your business.

How do you build valuable industry connections?

Developing skills through formal education gives you access to the resources and knowledge that can help you stay up-to-date with industry trends, keeping your business relevant.

You can also grow your network with like-minded individuals looking to advance their careers and strengthen their businesses. Connecting with other passionate business owners can open your mind to creative solutions and help motivate you in your business journey.

Should I get a qualification when starting my own business?

There are many fundamental elements to starting a business. You will have to consider finances, research, suppliers, manufacturers, distributors, marketing, sales, and different tasks you haven’t thought about yet. A qualification will give you the skills to run your own business and the confidence to bring your business to greater success

Putting in the effort to further your education and gain a qualification is not just about getting that piece of paper at the end. It teaches you the expertise that will harbour success and gives you the skills to take your career to the next level. Critically, it’s also a choice that you make for yourself. You can impact the how, what, when, and how hard you study. This demonstrates to clients that you are dedicated to providing real value to your business and shows yourself that you can achieve anything you put your mind to. 

Rather than relying on teachers, you learn to rely on yourself – which is in itself a great skill. It fosters self-assuredness and an ability to use initiative, to be autonomous and to make decisions, all of which will make running a business easier.

What is the right course for you as a business owner?

Starting a business has the potential to be one of your most rewarding endeavours. You get to see your ideas come to life and your product valued by consumers. However, if you have never owned a business or had staff looking to you for direction, being a boss can be a tough learning curve. The good news is that all these skills can be developed and strengthened. 

A great way to amplify these skills and gain up-to-date, relevant knowledge is to invest in a Diploma of Business (Leadership) (BSB50120) and/or a Diploma of Leadership & Management (BSB50420). You will learn how to manage a business and build the knowledge that you need to put your business on the road to success.

Taking this leap into business ownership can be daunting, but when it succeeds, it feels even more rewarding. Backing yourself up with the necessary tools will help you position your business to be more trusted, valued, and respected by your customers in the industry. 

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