If you’ve ever said to yourself, “I hate my job/boss/career path. I should really get into business and work for myself,” then ask yourself these questions.
Do I REALLY want to be doing that all day?
It’s a bit of a romance. But – there is no use being a dog washing business if you don’t like animals or a fast food business if you have no affinity with cooking or preparing food. Love what you do and your customers will love you. The money is a bi-product of your passion for the business. Once you’ve decided what you want to do, write down these answers on one page:
- What is my vision? – What do I want to be when I grow up?
- What is my strategy to achieve that vision?
- What are the things I need to do every day to ensure I am on track?
- What do I need to earn to achieve my goals?
- Will my new ‘business’ do that for me?
WHEN should I get into business for myself?
It’s never about when is the right time to get into business. It’s always about when is the right time for you. Ask yourself:
- Are you driven enough for this adventure?
- Are you resilient enough for this journey?
- Are you focused enough on your goals?
- Are you financially equipped to launch into this part of your life?
- Are you emotionally equipped to step out of your comfort zone and into the hot seat of accountability for every aspect of your life?
- Finally, and most importantly, do you have the support of your family? Is my spouse or life partner dialed in? They’re coming for the ride too – even if they are not going to work in the business, they need to be on board.
HOW do I get into business? Should I…. Buy it, Build it, or Bootstrap it?
People will have differing opinions of what each of these paths mean. Here’s my take:
- Buy It. Find a broker, a mentor, or a financial advisor to assist you with the sourcing and selection of an existing business to buy. Be clear, you will need help in your deliberations. Never fall in love with an asset or a deal. Seek to be impartial and consider the business on its merits.
- Build it. Once again, find some mentors or a business coach to help you develop a business plan, create a budget to match, and set some capital requirements. Then set about working out your cash flow the early days of your business adventure, because you will need that buffer to keep you going until the sales start to come in. So many small businesses go out of business in the first 12 months because of lack of planning, lack of sales, and therefore lack of cash.
- Bootstrap it. Open the doors, and then work out how to fix the rest of it on the fly. (The Sully business plan – see video clip below). This is the ultimate entrepreneurial way to get things done, and the path that has the most risk. Good business ideas always sound and feel good until they start to cost money. If you are to fix it on the fly, then get some relative feedback from a business mentor or financial advisor before you start your adventure to put your future into perspective.
About Troy Hazard: I am the founder/owner of 12 businesses over the last 25 years, current CEO of Troy Hazard International, author of the book Future-Proofing Your Business, and the former Global President of the Entrepreneurs’ Organization. I have been a franchisee twice and a franchisor while consulting with over 300 brands in 6 countries. You can find me on Twitter @TroyHazard. You can book me to speak at your event by contacting us or calling 214-536-6666.