Taking the leap from the 9-5 world of an employee and entering the “every day is Monday” world of the entrepreneur is not an easy one. For every individual that takes the plunge the pro’s and cons will vary. A few things come standard with this life-changing transition.
Time management is one of them. Being your own boss gives you the freedom to make your own hours. You will still need to choose what 14-18 hours in a day you want to work. Trust me when I say owning your own business will not be easy and you will have to learn a lot of new skills. That being said, there is a reward in creating something all of your own.
The gains and inevitability of becoming a business owner
Kate Daniels of kddesignandmarketing.com.au
Wrote in to tell us how becoming a business owner gave her back her power and the struggles of dealing with imposter syndrome.
“I transitioned from employee to entrepreneur as working full-time with two young children was not working for my family. I was unhappy, & my kids were unhappy. I went back to work full-time when my youngest was 8 months (my oldest was 20 months at the time). I spent every morning crying from daycare to work, and coupled with not so understanding boss I knew I wouldn’t be able to last. On a whim, I quit my job (after 6 months) and knew I had to find something that would work - a source of income I could have that would work around my family. KD Design & Marketing was born. I was now a freelance digital marketer that helped small-medium sized businesses with their online presence. “
“My biggest struggle was hands down comparing myself to others - possibly those that had been in business a lot longer than I had, and those that were applying themselves full-time (I work 2-3 days per week). I had to shut myself off from the constant online comparisons and focus on the aims of MY business. My business aim wasn’t to have 100k Instagram follows and being inundated with work that I couldn’t spend as much time with my family. My aim was to do an amazing job for the clients I worked for, and to earn a steady income without compromising on the other things that were important to me”
For business owners, it’s important to remember you are most likely not the only person doing work in your field and that’s ok. If you are always pushing to improve and provide the best possible product or service, you will find success. There is always more then enough work to go around if you put in the effort to find it.
Introspection is a great tool, as long as you make sure your comparisons are only used to promote growth and further your learning. You are no less or more than any other given individual. Circumstance aside you have chosen to take the reigns of your life and creating something all your own! Feel proud about that.
Get started: employee to entrepreneur
It can be very easy as an entrepreneur to be your own biggest roadblock. When you go from having a structured job to running a multifaceted company, things can tend to look overwhelming.
Alejandra ‘Alex’ Love, Founder, and CEO of Alex Love Consulting wrote in with a comment that rings true.
Just Do It
“The most courageous thing I’ve ever done as a person was to start. As Entrepreneurs, we sometimes psych ourselves out “; “I don’t want to start until my content is perfect”; “I don’t want to start without a website”; “I don’t want to start without a mailing list”—the list of excuses is endless. BUT once you take the leap and start, there’s no turning back.”
“The key to making my transition from Employee to Entrepreneur was STARTING. Fear was my greatest challenge but once I stopped worrying about what could go wrong it seems like everything started to go right.”
At the end of the day you are no longer an employee, each step you take moving forward will have to reflect that. Get started and don’t wait for tomorrow.
If you want to succeed you persevere: sacrifice
It is easy to give up. In fact, it’s one of the easiest things we can do as people is give up. While you might encounter endless turmoil deciding to give up will still be easy. True entrepreneurs though never give up, they adapt, learn and overcome or at most strategically step back from a situation.
Our next story comes from Alana Okumu
“My husband and I opened our first business over 10 years ago, I was a medical administrator at the time working full time with 2 little kids at home. We moved our daughter out of her bedroom to share a room with her brother and started a call center. I worked nights as the call center set appointments for my husband during the day it was hard working shift work and having people working from your home all day while you are trying to sleep. It was a big sacrifice the biggest hurdles were cash flow and time management - but as an entrepreneur, these are the decisions you make, you cannot achieve anything without passion, drive, and commitment. It takes a massive shift in mindset to break out of the employee perspective where you clock off once at home, you don’t have to ability to switch off your passion if you want to succeed you persevere.”
Keep putting one foot in front of the other as long as you are moving forward you have not failed.
Wearing all the hats
Jamie L Smith of www.amplifyadvisors.ca
“The biggest struggle has been the balance of bringing on sub-contractors and employees and timing that with our business development and new opportunities. Our biggest risk is getting that balance right and ensuring the timing of hiring a full-time employee is supported by our cash-flow and forecasting. Some of the shifts I found interesting include (1) change of routine (2) the extreme need to be organized and disciplined (3) balancing long-term impact and short-term cash-flow and charge-ability (4) investment upfront to be scalable. These weren’t all challenging but they were all key and I would be happy to expand on them. Things that took much of my effort and time upfront include (1) website (2) social media and marketing strategy (3) apps and software selections (4) drafting templates and contracts (5) trying to keep up with documentation of workflow (6) tax and corporation set up (7) networking with business partners, potential clients and candidates (8) reading and researching including books, search engine optimization,”
To wrap up part one of this series, it’s important to note that choosing to become your own boss as Jamie learned you will have to wear all the hats it takes to make a business work. Some hats will be heavy or awkward, others will fit naturally. Some hats you might have to pay someone else to wear. One thing is for sure at the end of the day while you will most likely work harder than you ever had before. You will be stronger and a better leader because of it.
Being your own boss can feel very lonely, that’s why it’s important to find a group of people just like you who understand what it means to be your own boss and ways to deal and master entrepreneur life. If you are a driven person looking to start or grow your current business.
Check out our Empowerment Pride.