Your Business is Now Your Life: The Realities of Going Solo

Having a great business idea and knowing how you are going to generate an income is certainly a good starting point, but it makes a lot of sense to take your time to check out all the angles of self-employment before you take the plunge.

Here is a look at the various pros and cons attached to running your own business so that you know exactly what you are letting yourself in for, including a reminder of some of the perks you might be giving up, some ideas for identifying the right type of business to run, plus some suggestions on how to put your plans into action, even when you have some reservations about how successful you might be.

Before you quit your job

It doesn’t do any harm to take a moment for a reality check while are hatching your plans for launching a business, as there are certain perks attached to working for someone else that you will almost certainly be saying goodbye to once you quit.

Firstly, there is the fact that you get a regular paycheck on the same day of every month, and it can be hard to adjust to the unpredictability of generating enough cash in the bank to pay your bills each month.

There is also the fact that you won’t get any annual paid leave or sick pay when you are working for yourself. Every week you take off from your small business will be a week where you won’t be earning any money.

You need to be prepared for this level of adjustment to your lifestyle and income as it goes with the territory of running your own business. The potential upside of being your own boss is unlimited income opportunities rather than receiving a fixed salary, so you have to weigh up the risks and rewards before you go ahead and quit your job.

Doing something you enjoy

When you decide to become your own boss you also have the chance to start a venture that gives you the opportunity to follow a passion and do something you enjoy while earning an income.

If you like to spend your time behind a wheel you could search Truck Dealers Australia, for instance, and find a deal on a vehicle that you can use for your business.

There are some definite benefits attached to doing something you have a clear liking and talent for, especially the fact that your enthusiasm often shines through in the way you approach your work, and that can be good for business as customers enjoy the good service you provide.

A suitable compromise

If you have identified what you believe is a strong business opportunity and are happy to give up the security of your regular job straight away, that’s fine, but some of us are understandably a bit more hesitant about such a drastic step.

It is perfectly normal to have some doubts and general concerns about the viability of your business idea and whether it is going to be as successful as you hope it will be, which is why finding a suitable compromise might be the way to go forward.

If the prospect of quitting your salaried job is a step too far to start with you could work on starting a business while you are still working for someone else.

Making it work

You will obviously have to remain committed to your current employer and fulfill your contractual obligations in terms of time and whether you have any restrictions on trade that you have to observe, which could apply if you are thinking of setting up a similar type of business.

Some types of business opportunities lend themselves to the idea of balancing your time between holding down a regular job while developing contacts and testing the water to see how positive the response is to your idea.

It is also feasible that you might be able to go and talk to your boss and negotiate a part-time role, which they may be happy with rather than lose your services altogether.

Many bosses will understand your desire to start your own business as it is something they have done themselves, and there is a chance that you are granted the chance to get the best of both worlds with a regular income as a bit of added security while you develop your business.

If you don’t think they will run with that idea you could store up your holiday entitlement so that you get a few extra weeks to get your start-up under way.

Charlie Hunt is a business consultant who tries to help anyone who asks for it, no matter if they are a micro-business run from the kitchen table or a start-up expected to do big things.