(Note: This is a contributed post)
Are you working for “the man” right not but deep down know that this isn’t for you? You probably envision yourself breaking free from these corporate shackles and setting sail on your own entrepreneurial journey. If this is the case, you should be taking advantage of the time and the safety that employment provides. Use this time to reflect, learn and develop your business skills.
By learning as much as possible in your current position you can make the jump into entrepreneurship a bit easier on yourself. In today’s article, we will provide a few pieces of advice which you can use to make the move from employment to entrepreneurship.
Do Your Research
The last thing that you want to do is dive into starting a business without having a clear plan of action. There are plenty of resources online that tell you everything from how to write a business plan to establishing small business working capital. Plus, you are likely to have a whole range of resources available in your current job that you can make the most of. In fact, there is a lot to learn about the world of business simply by learning more about your current employer and its business model. Don’t be afraid to reach out to people in different business functions to learn how their part of the business operates and contributes to the whole.
Use Your Employee Benefits
If your lucky, your company may offer some sort of tuition reimbursement program which will allow you to take courses while you are still working. Maybe your employer offers optional training seminars which you could attend. Even if they are not directly about the area of business that you want to get into, you never know when the knowledge may come in handy. Go through your manager or the corporate training program to learn more about your options.
Seek Out Increased Responsibility
When you start your own business, you will discover the ultimate level of responsibility. So, to prepare yourself for this, you should try to ask for projects at work that test your skills and help you to handle pressure. Your employer may also be grateful as you may be providing real value to the company. If you can prove to yourself that you can successfully launch and run a project in your workplace, it is likely to give you confidence when you enter the world of business.
Live Below Your Means
One of the hardest things about starting a business is not having the steady income that you are used to. So, you should try to plan for any financial challenges ahead by preparing yourself while you still have a full-time job. Eliminate your debt and practice living a more frugal lifestyle. Being comfortable living without knowing where your next paycheck is coming from will be a real challenge. If you can get yourself in this mindset before making the jump, it will pay dividends down the road.
Build Up a Knowledge Base
There are plenty of people who can act as advisors in your current workplace, so get into the habit of seeking mentors and maybe finding people who have run their own business before. The more connections you build now, the more people you have to call upon when you take the plunge and start your own business. Plus, you never know who may someday turn into a future business partner.
It goes without saying that the transition from employment to entrepreneurship can will be a challenging one, so the best thing you can do now is to prepare yourself fully before making the leap. On top of the advice above, it’s also important that you fully understand the risks and consequences of setting off on your own. There are going to be adjustments both financially and emotionally that come with an entrepreneurial lifestyle. Think through your decision before you make a jump. Is now the right time? Does your business idea have weight? Who in your life is there to be supportive?
Once you’ve answered these questions and you’re determined to move forward, the only thing left is to make it happen. Listen to your instinct and move forward with confidence into your entrepreneurial journey.