Updated: Mar 28, 2019
Some say the entrepreneurial spirit is inherited, and it’s in your blood.
I think that can be true, but I think it’s also learned. As you grow up you meet many entrepreneurs and you learn a little from them whether you realize it or not. You see your local mechanic, doctor, realtor, or store owner working both early and late hours and hear phrases like “hard work pays off” and “you can do anything you put your mind to”. For those who do choose to start their own business, the reasons seem to be universal.
ESCAPING CORPORATE LIFE: This might be the biggest motivator of all. Many ask themselves, “why am I working 40+ hours a week to make someone else money!?”.
MORE MONEY: Depending upon the business, once you are up and running and making a steady profit, you’ll likely be able to make more money working for yourself than for others. This of course isn’t 100% guaranteed, but most of the time when you cut out the middle-man, you make more money.
FLEXIBILITY OF BEING YOUR OWN BOSS: The flexibility of being their own boss is a frequent number one answer when someone is asked why they started their own business, especially for those who find corporate life less than flexible. If you own your own business, you can schedule your work around the other important things in your life like children, family, pets, medical needs, hobbies, and religious or philanthropic tasks.
LEAVING A LEGACY: How is the world better because you were in it? What legacy will you leave behind? These questions are often thought as people grow older and mature. Our friends and families will certainly remember us fondly, but how we affect the world professionally is something we seek and decide.
CONTROLLING THE DECISIONS AND CHOOSING YOUR OWN TEAM: Many people who become frustrated with their current situation and think they can do the job better and make more money than their current employer leave their jobs and start a similar or competing business.
If any of this touches a nerve and you’re motivated to start your own business there are a few key things you should consider first:
Are you willing to accept the risk of self-employment over the security of working for someone else? When you’re self-employed paychecks aren’t guaranteed.
Are you willing to work harder and longer than you currently are in order to start and grow your business? You might need to work your own business part-time while still working your full-time job until your small business is off the ground.
Are you willing to sacrifice (time, money, sanity) in order to be successful? Many small business owners work long hard hours to see their dreams come true.
If you’re still interested in starting your own business, you’ll need to make a plan before you make your first move or spend that first penny. There are many free online resources with excellent information to help you get started. Don’t let yourself get overwhelmed, just take it one step at a time. Do your research, then do some more.
Research what it takes to start a business in your state.
Research laws that govern your industry.
Research your competitors.
Research the average start-up costs for your business type.
Research your target audience and why they want or need what you have.
Think about what your short and long goals really are, and what your mission will be.
Ask yourself if you are truly passionate about this profession and industry.
Ask yourself if you are willing to learn the skills necessary to run your business, or pay others to do them for you.
Research and think through it all, and most importantly take your time. You’ll find more questions along the way which will only help you in the end.
If you’ve answered all those questions and are still interested in starting your own business, talk with some local small business owners and get their advice. The women of Triangle Women in Business are here to help. We can also direct you to some great local resources and classes.
Some people will always choose the security of working for someone else over the risk and freedom of working for yourself, and that’s okay too. Starting a business is a great risk, but it can be a great reward. We’re here if you need help!
by Laura Long Collins