I frequently get asked ‘what advice would you give to someone just starting out in business’?
It’s a great question.
Here’s what I think.
First, make sure you really WANT to be in business for yourself.
While being an entrepreneur / business owner / solopreneur may sound way cool, the reality is that it is not all about smelling the roses and getting to do what you love. In fact there is a lot more you will need to learn and implement which may not be in your area of competence, let alone your zone of genius.
Even if you end out outsourcing to others, as the business owner, the buck does stop with you.
Here are some of the reasons why I'm in business for myself -
- I love the absolute ‘live and die by your sword' element. Everything is on you. Confronting, but also makes you grow more than you can imagine.
- I love the freedom to make choices about what work I do and who I work with.
- I love the creative aspect of solving problems, and creating and teaching in general.
- I actually really like working hard. I’m not a ’spend time watching sport or hanging on the beach’ kind of girl. I find what I do infinitely more interesting.
You may have some of these, or some of these other common reasons -
- Removing a ‘wages’ ceiling, and ability to set your rates
- Location independence
- Lifestyle balance
- You have considered retirement but you're not done! You have more you want to do.
These are just a few, but it is worth examining what these are for you.
Consider whether you may achieve a lot of these things without being in business for yourself. There is a lot more flexibility in workplaces now, and many virtual and flexible jobs.
Something I did for a long while was work with/alongside other solopreneurs. This provided a great apprenticeship, and an understanding of what was really involved.
So the question to ask yourself is … what do you love doing, and do you need to be in business for yourself to do it.
A second key piece of advice, particularly if you have regular financial commitments such as a mortgage, or dependent children, is that unless you have a significant buffer of funds, it is wiser to transition into self-employment. It will involved almost working ’two jobs’ for awhile but it will be worth it in lack of financial stress.
You may need funding for things like a website, marketing, premises (I’d consider whether you need premises very carefully), a co-working space (perhaps) and education. Education, courses and mentoring can help you fast track to where you need to go.
Being in business is an entire universe all of its own.
It has its own language, and concepts you may have never heard before.
If you want to get a taste of what marketing and online business is all about, you should head over and do this onlineiq quiz.
The results will be emailed to you and you will get a really good idea of the best place for you to start is.
It only takes two minutes.