Five Tips on Making the Leap from a 9-5 to Entrepreneur
When I was ready to strike out on my own from the corporate environment to entrepreneurship, I knew I had to have a plan. The income wouldn’t be steady, my network would have to be expanded, and I would have to have the necessary equipment to run an office. There are several resources the 9 – 5′ver takes for granted on a day to day basis, and I learned quickly that it is a totally different world when you’re running the show on your own. Here are a few tips, I’ve learned along the way that I hope will make your transition into entrepreneurship a bit easier.
1. CUT BACK- Start decreasing your expenses, and begin looking closely at personal wants vs needs. By disciplining yourself before you leave your full time job, you will develop the habit of putting the needs of the business first and you can contribute toward Step 2.
2. SAVE, SAVE, SAVE- Have money set aside. Ideally, have 12 months of savings to cover your expenses, and at a minimum, at least six (6) months is required. Most entrepreneurs make the mistake of making the leap without their own financial net while relying on the business they have coming in to pay for their basic needs. Don’t put yourself in a situation where one missed or delayed payment could put you or your company in jeopardy.
3. MAKE A PLAN – Have your business plan in place before you quit your job. As the saying goes “when you fail to plan, you plan to fail”. By creating a detailed business plan which includes marketing, financial projections and a basic strategy on how you will obtain, execute and retain business, you will have a blueprint to keep yourself on track. There is plenty of information online on how to create a plan that fits your business.
4. BUILD A TEAM - I’m not talking about an office staff per se. Create a network of clients, contacts and friends that can either provide business or access to business opportunities and leads. It is especially important if you are moving from one industry to a new one. You don’t want to make the leap and no one knows who you are. Plus people tend to do business with those they know or who were referred by a reliable source.
5. HAVE OFFICE SPACE – Whether it’s a designated room or area in your home or an actual office space, it is imperative you have an area where you can conduct & run your business on a daily basis with as few distractions as possible. It’s easy to get comfortable when you are not in the same structured 9 to 5 work environment.
I hope these tips help you on you journey! If you have your own business what additional tips would you add to the list?