I knew a long time ago that I preferred working for myself. I like to do things at my own pace and I like to reap the rewards for my own hard work, rather than earning the same as people who do more or less than I do. The only real problem was that I needed to earn a certain amount of money to be able to support myself and my family, and it was hard to find a business that could help me reach those goals.
While working at other jobs, I tried things like running a gift basket business, selling life insurance and selling my own creations. I owned my own niche print magazine for several years too, but unfortunately it never earned me the full time income I needed, and it couldn’t stand up to the recession.
I started this blog as a hobby several years ago and never intended for it to be a full time job. It didn’t take long to realize that there was real potential here though, and I worked hard to learn everything I need to know for this to be my career. I’m still learning every day and there are ups and downs, but it has been a real blessing for my family.
Through these ventures I have learned several things about running a business. Here are a few suggestions to consider before working for yourself:
- Make a business plan that includes how you will deal with a downturn in the market, and an exit plan.
- Have an emergency fund that will help you through the hard times.
- Set goals and re-evaluate them regularly.
- Be prepared to work longer hours and more days than ever before.
- Never stop learning. Use a variety of resources when researching how to grow your business.
- Handle yourself professionally.
- Remember those who have helped you succeed and return the favour when you can.
- Form partnerships.
- Recognize when you can’t do it all yourself and hire passionate people to help you.
- Don’t be afraid to take a risk.
What would you recommend to people who are thinking of starting a business?