For those who decide to pursue the route of self-employment there are as many pitfalls as there are rewards. Careful planning and preparation can make the transition from conventional employment to self-employment less stressful and strenuous. Some general guidelines of things to watch out for and other advice that may be helpful are listed below. While not comprehensive, this list gives the budding entrepreneur a head start in taking the dive toward self-employment or starting a new business.
Responsibility is the keyword for managing a business. You no longer have someone watching out for you. In fact the only person who will look out for you is you -- unless you pay someone to do so and even then it is no guarantee that they will protect you from mistakes. The bottom line is that when you run a business you must be 100% responsible to your business, to your customers and to yourself. No more sleeping in late or skipping work. When you work for yourself the person you are cheating is staring right back at you in the mirror. So before you take the plunge make sure you can fulfill the obligations required of you on all levels.
Attitude is always discussed when it comes to success. And it most certainly applies just as much to a business as it does to a person. This means that you must have the right attitude and you must also ensure that your business has the right attitude. Everything that a customer sees, hears, knows about your business contributes to it's image. Thus, make sure you are presenting the correct one. As an owner you must also have an attitude of having the answer. You have to be somebody your customers can depend on and more than anything that depends on confidence. If you have confidence in yourself then your customers will have confidence in you.
Goals are the biggest factor in separating the successful business from the unsuccessful ones. Most unsuccessful businesses fail to set goals or they set them in such a way that they are vague and amorphous rather than specific and tangible. The business needs goals as well as the employees. If you are the only employee then that means you need goals. The most important goals to set are for customer contacts, profitability and sales. Just by setting these goals in these three areas you will be far ahead of the average startup.
A business must have references and your references will always be the work you have done in the past. The key is to begin building a very professional portfolio of the work you do or the products you sale. These, more so than anything else will be your calling card and your guarantee of future business. This means that you should do your utmost to do your very best work on the first clients you receive. Much of your future will depend on how satisfied those customers are with your service.
Information is for educational and informational purposes only and is not be interpreted as financial or legal advice. This does not represent a recommendation to buy, sell, or hold any security. Please consult your financial advisor.