How To Stay Sane While Launching Your Business
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I’ve seen so many people jump straight into a business with little to no experience and they go all out, quitting their job and announcing it to the world and a few weeks, months or if lucky a year later, they are desperate and hunting for their old jobs again, because it was a lot harder than they ever imagined. Face it, business is a skill set and you need to be knowledgeable in how it works so you can leverage it to help you.
Most people are living pay-check to pay-check and on average, a typical corporate person is only 2-3 months away from going broke if they lost their job. For most, their job is their primary source of income. It’s just the way it is. Times are changing and society is getting more expensive. Sometimes, it’s a struggle just to make ends meet and put food on the table. So is it risky to start a business? Yes it is. Is it risky to stick all your eggs in one basket and hold on to your job? Even more so!
If you’re like most people, you probably have a family to take care of, perhaps a student loan or credit card debts you’re working to pay off. You probably have a mortgage and while you’re not happy with your current income, it’s at least keeping you above water. So what else can you do? And how are you going to get this business off the ground in a way that doesn’t put you at risk?
Below are 4 simple strategies to help you reduce the risk of starting your business:
1. START YOUR BUSINESS PART-TIME AND OUTSIDE YOUR DAY JOB HOURS
The biggest thing you can do to ensure you get your business up and running, no matter what it is, is having cashflow to support it. Especially in the early days, when you’ll need to outlay cash to get things going. Having a job, no matter what kind of job it is will help you keep afloat. Whether you are working full time, or part time, keep that job going while you are setting up your business. Everything takes time to get going and your new venture will require you to not only have a steady income coming in to pay the bills, plus keep the business afloat, but a calm and steady mind as well. If you are broke, desperate and without funds, you won’t be able to get much happening with your business as you won’t have the resources to fund it, nor will you be in a credible position to attract business because you will be acting out of desperation and fear – this is sure to backfire when you are negotiating deals and selling.
One of the best things I did while starting my first business was to do it part time, after hours and on weekends, while still maintaining my corporate job and pay-check. Yes, I wanted out of the corporate world, but I had to plan it carefully and get my business off the ground in my own spare time, whilst ensuring I was still paying the bills. If you’ve got the cash-flow from your job still going, make the most of any surplus and invest in your education. This will go a long way to helping you in your business.
2. PLAN FOR THE FUTURE AND FOCUS ON THE PRESENT
Whilst you put a lot of effort into planning your business and working on all the different components needed to make it work, don’t let this distract you from the job at hand. It’s important to remember not to bite the hand that feeds you. If you are at work in your corporate job, then put 100% into doing the best job you can. After all it pays the bills right? Plus you need to keep that job going till you have managed to create another income source which will give you options down the track.
If you are working part-time and after hours on your business, then do not allow yourself to be distracted by things like TV, long phone calls, partying with friends. Don’t get me wrong, there is a time and a place for everything. However, once you set a plan in motion to build your business part-time, then thats what you need to be doing religiously. Your business is a direct reflection of you. If you are consistent, dedicated and focused, you will build a strong foundation for your business.
3. ALWAYS CHALLENGE YOUR WHY
You are choosing to to take on the extra workload of building a business, in addition to your current job – this is a massive undertaking! Its going to stretch you in every human way possible, financially, time-wise, physically with all the extra hours you’ll need to put in, emotionally when times get tough and even spiritually when you will need inspiration from elsewhere just to move forward that day when it seems hopeless. So what is your reason for wanting to do this? Why do you want to take on such a challenge? There has to be a great purpose that drives you each day to get out of bed and be motivated. When times get really challenging and they will, your WHY if strong enough will be the only thing that carries you forward in that moment. You constantly need to challenge your WHY and see if it is as strong as you think it is and is it long term, not just a feel good wish of yours.
Your WHY will fuel your passion and this will come out in every action you undertake. People will sense this and it is contagious. Bill Gates is successful because he had such a powerful WHY to bring computing to every home in the world and he was so driven at an early age, that no matter how many setbacks he had, he pushed on with his dream and today Microsoft is the company that it is, having changed millions of lives and transformed the industry forever. Work out your WHY.
4. LEVERAGE YOURSELF WITH GOOD PEOPLE
When you are kicking off any venture on your own, it’s a mountain of work that needs to be done – i.e. sales, marketing, production, admin just to name a few. This is in addition to your already busy life and your day job. It makes sense to get help and advice from people in the know. I’m not talking about your work colleagues, your neighbours or your family (unless they really know what they are talking about and have set up successful businesses). It will come down to how efficient and effective you can be in getting yourself organised to run your business and keep the rest of your life in balance. Know what your time is worth and do the work that will grow your business as much as possible. Outsource everything else, within reason. Having this mentality early on will be one of the smartest things you can do, because its always harder to let go of things once you are set in your ways, months or years from now.
Make a list of all the things that need to be done and look around you for who you can work with to get it done as part of a team, collaboration, partnership perhaps or strategic alliance. You can also outsource a lot of work these days to people all over the world for very low cost. However knowing this in advance can save you thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours from doing the jobs you don’t enjoy doing – i.e. book-keeping, or website design, when you could be out there promoting your business.
Can you think of other strategies for keeping same while building your business? Reply below to leave a comment and let us know your situation. We’d love to hear your thoughts, as your insights can help many others just like you. Best responses will get shared on our Facebook page. We look forward to hearing your feedback!
Gavin Sequeira is the author of the much acclaimed book ‘Break Free From Corporate’. Make sure you get your copy today to kickstart your transition from corporate and into your business. If you would like to contribute, please contact us through the “Contact” page and we look forward to connecting with you!
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