Being a entrepreneur isn’t as simple as having an idea and running with it. The idea is the big starting point but there are some things to consider if you are thinking about making that hobby or idea into a business. I worked on creating my business for 9 months before opening the virtual doors then over a year before it got to the point it became a second full time job in itself to the one I already had, and we could even ponder the idea of making Some Odd Girl my day job. You have to take a long look at yourself, your habits and what it will take to make it feasible for you and what your definition of success means for you, your biz, and your family.
– Am I a self motivator? The idea of staying in bed until you get want to get up and start your day is SO alluring but unless you can motivate yourself daily to get out of bed (you don’t always have to get out of the PJs, but it helps) and do what needs to be done without a boss or coworkers looking over your shoulder and asking where things are or why this or that isn’t done, well, then you’re in for a struggle. Being Self Motivated is something that you can learn and work on but its not easy for everyone.
– Do I have self discipline? Being self employed means a lot of flexibility in your schedule but it also means there are lots of chances for distractions. Facebook. Twitter. Hulu. Friends. Naps. Besides being able to motivate yourself to get the To Dos done you have to be able to make your own schedule and stick to it. Say no to things that would distract you, turn off the rest of the world and hunker down. Its another practice that you can work on but again, not easy to keep up consistently.
– Am I organized? I find this one the easiest to fall in and out of. Staying organized is more than just keeping papers, notes, and your work where its easy to find and at hand its also about setting yourself obtainable goals and mapping out multiple areas that need to be worked on and how you will do it. Maintaining the schedule, marketing, email, and everything else without letting any one thing take over. Organization is about balancing all your needs. I have a few things I do to help. I keep a big white board of the master list, I have clipboards and files for my papers, my To Do list is on both my phone and tablet (synced) broken down in all the steps to each item. Organized doesn’t have anything to do with the messy state of my desk lol. That’s a mix of many things. 😉
– If I don’t know, am I willing to learn? This is almost the biggest one because so many people think the answers are easy and if you can’t quickly find it then *shrug* you must not need to know it. Learning a new skill or way of thinking isn’t a quick endeavor with easy text book answers. You have to willing to put in the effort to learn and grow yourself on your own. Did I know how to design stamps and make digis before getting started? Nope. Is that what I wanted to do? Yup. Did all the people I emailed with my questions answer them? Not a one. Did that stop me from making my own answers and doing a crap ton of research? OF COURSE NOT! You have to be willing to dig and do that hard work without help and learn as you go. Its not fast or easy but it is doable.
Starting a business and quitting a job for the business are two totally different things mind you, a lot more goes into that decision! But if you are thinking of starting a business that you don’t want to just be a hobby biz, then taking these things into consideration is a big step. I’m not the best top notch ever at them every single day but consistency pays off is what I’ve learned.
Angie Ashuk says:
Thank you for this little bit of advice. I’ve been toying with starting up a business myself. I already have a home daycare, but looking into something else once my daughter startes school in the fall. Its a big step for me, so I enjoy hearing what others have done, or what they’ve found to be the biggest challanges.
Jess D says:
Thanks for sharing. A lot of these things ring fairly true with me at the moment, as I’m studying via correspondence, so I need to be disciplined, self motivated and organised if i’m going to get ANYTHING done!