I would like to talk today about something most, if not all of my clients have gone through and recently I have experienced, taking the plunge to drive your business as your sole job. Or, in my case, getting thrown.
For those that didn’t know I worked at a very large (third largest in the world) software company as well as CarlowSEO. That position, after 7 years of employment, was recently “simplified” and I effectively was laid off.
Now for some that might be a devastating blow to their pride, ego, financial situation, and life in general. For me, and I am sure many others, this became a time for self evaluation and the internal debate of “Could I make CarlowSEO a full time gig?”
After talking with one of my largest supporters, clients, and personal friends over at Long Financial Group I have decided to give it a shot.
So here are some things I would suggest to do before starting, or getting thrown into running your own business (of course it is early so I will be reviewing this and revising it often I am sure)
1. Ensure there is a market for your company – This was a little less challenging for me as I have been running this side gig for 5 years now, but it was still an important thought process. Do I have enough current clients? Will they alone be enough for a sustainable business? How will I get more/new business? Will the market keep growing?
All very important things to determine before putting all of the eggs in one basket (especially when you yourself are the basket)
2. Determine the nut you have to meet vs the one you want to – Even I have dreams of never working again and spending time with my kids every day in luxurious locations doing amazing things… BUT.. those things will take time. First I had to determine what I was going to do to ensure my family is in a “good enough spot”. Life is going to change but I know after working with some other smart people (more on that to come) that I can successfully cover the monthly minimum nut as it stands today.
The other side of that is what do I WANT to make every year. These numbers, hopefully for you as well, are quite different numbers. This is the goal number… what do I need to bring in every day to live how I want to, not need to.
3. The smartest business owner knows they aren’t the smartest person – I have dealt a lot with small businesses over the years. The ones that tend to succeed are the ones that the owners know they aren’t the greatest at everything, and therefore surround themselves with a network of experts. Financial planning, insurance, legal matters, marketing, website design, copywritting, the whole nine yards. I don’t have time to do it all so I need the help to get stuff done. They Need to be people that will argue with you, tell you you are wrong, and are willing to not only succeed with you but also fail with you.
So, I got thrown into the fully self employed pool… and am swimming!