If you are thinking about starting a business, then likely you would have asked yourself this question: “Should I start my own business? Do I have what it takes to make it successful?” In this blog post, we will dive into those answers.
I started my own business as a stay-at-home-mom back in Year 2011, and it has been one of the most amazing, rewarding and fulfilling experiences of my life. You can read more about my story HERE. In fact, we are in the greatest time of history where by leveraging on the internet and a laptop, you can literally build an online business anytime, anywhere, with very little startup cost.
However, starting your own business is not all sunshine and roses, there will definitely be obstacles and challenges. So before you invest your time and money into your business idea, it is important to understand the Pros and Cons of starting your own business, AND if you really have what it takes to succeed.
You may also like:
– FREE course: How To Start Your Purpose-Driven Online Business
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With that being said, let us dive right in!
Pros and Cons of Starting Your Own Business
The first big question you will need to answer is whether the benefits of starting your own business truly outweigh the disadvantages for YOU.
The pros are pretty obvious, and that explains why there are many women just like you who are starting their own businesses. Below are some of those reasons:
- Do what you love: You get to build a business based on your passions and interests!
- You call your own shots: You are the boss and you get to make all the decisions about your business.
- Flexible time: You get to decide when your business operates.
- You decide on the Location: Want a retail store? Want to work from home? Prefer to have an online business? You get to make that decision.
- Choose your clients/customers: You get to choose who you want to serve, who do you want to work with and what projects you want to do.
- Unlimited income potential: You have the chance to earn more than you would working for someone else. Your income potential is only limited by your creativity, willing to work hard and ability to leverage on the right tools, system and team.
- Build something you are proud of: This is your baby and you get to build something that you are completely proud of.
- Building an asset: You can turn your ideas, creativity (and sweat equity) into an income-generating asset that pays you over and over.
- Tax Benefits: There can be various tax benefits associating with starting your own business. Check with your accountant or tax advisor for more details on your situation.
You can also check out my blog post Top 13 Benefits Of Starting an Online Business for the advantages of starting specifically an online business.
There is a flip side to every coin. Does any of the disadvantages below trouble you?
- Little or no income at the beginning: It takes time to build a business. So at the beginning, you may or may not be earning anything.
- Income fluctuation: You income will likely fluctuate. Unlike having a job, your business revenue/profit depends on the number of clients/customers you have, the price point of your products and services and the model you have (one time payment or monthly model). Therefore, your income can fluctuate from month to month.
- More complicated finances: Your finances will likely become more complicated (hello crazy tax laws!). Also, if you want to get a mortgage or other loans, lenders will likely give you higher criteria than someone with a stable job.
- You have to be a self-starter: Since you are the boss and no one is going to monitor you, you should be a self-starter.
- You have to do everything yourself (or hire someone to help you). “Everything” means setting up your business, finding or creating your products and services, figuring out sourcing and logistics, marketing, selling, closing, handling clients, managing the finances etc.
- You may feel isolation, loneliness and pressure: If you are starting your business with no business partners, you could feel isolated, lonely or pressured.
Fortunately, most of these disadvantages can be minimized or overcome. Let‘s take a look below on how to overcome these disadvantages.
Overcoming the Disadvantages of Starting Your Own Business
As outlined above, although there are some disadvantages of starting your own business, there are ways you can minimize or overcome them.
On Your Finances
- Save up before you start: It will take a few months for your business to turn a meaningful profit. So during that time, you want to make sure that you are not relying solely on the income from your new business. If you are working full-time right now, keep your full-time job and start your business as a side hustle first. If you are a stay-at-home-mom, make sure that your spouse is bringing in a stable income or at least you have a few months of household expenses (at least 6 months, preferably more) saved up.
- Have a budget for managing irregular income: Save up when profits come in, spend according to a budget (do not overspend) and set the pricing of your products/services to account for things like off time.
- Hire help for finances: If you are worried about managing your finances, then hire a bookkeeper, an accountant or a tax advisor. Having the right people on your team not only can help you reduce your stress, avoid tax reporting mistakes and can potentially save you money on your taxes!
On Getting Support
- Ways to stay motivated: You can stay motivated by giving yourself 20 minutes of personal development time each day. For example, watching and listening to youtube/podcast/audio from other successful entrepreneurs. Also, surround yourself with other self-driven entrepreneurs by joining an entrepreneur club or a mastermind group. Putting yourself in a supportive environment can help you stay motivated and avoid feelings such as isolation and loneliness too. Check out my blog post 9 Effective Strategies To Stay Motivated as an Entrepreneur.
- Learn or Outsource: When you come across business aspects you do not know, you have 2 choices: Learn them yourself or outsource them. My suggestion is that if that aspect of the business is critical to your business success or if you cannot afford to outsource yet (as for many new small businesses), then learn the skill. You can outsource the tasks when your business brings in more income. By that time, you are also clearer on what aspect of your business you want to outsource. There are many places where you can find outsourcing resources easily, such as Fiverr, UpWork and Freelancer.
As you can see, although there are disadvantages of starting your own business, most of these disadvantages can be minimized or overcome.
Do I have What It Takes to Succeed?
In the last section, we discussed the Pros and Cons of starting your own business. And we also discussed how you can minimized and overcome the disadvantages of starting a business.
Now, let us look at the characteristics of a successful entrepreneur – Do you have what it takes to build a successful, profitable and sustainable business?
Below is a brief summary – please check out my blog post Success Mindset: 8 Secrets of Building a Successful Business where I go into details on each secret and how you can improve.
The 8 characteristics of a successful entrepreneurs:
- Have passion in what you do
- Stay out of fear and stay in faith
- Always be learning
- Have a burning desire
- Understand that not everyone will support you
- Execute, execute, execute!
- View failures as lessons and persist until succeed
- Enjoy the journey
Again, check out my blog post Success Mindset: 8 Secrets of Building a Successful Business for more details and additional resources.
By choosing the right business to start and by developing the right mindset, you can definitely build a successful business.
Start Small and Dream Big!
A few final thoughts…
Finally, if you are still asking yourself, “Should I start my own business?”
My answer is: Listen to your intuition, that is what your heart tells you and it is never wrong.
Also, be honest with yourself about your level of commitment. I believe that everything can be learned so skill set and experience are NOT the determining factor. The key determining factor is really your level of commitment.
You do not have to jump in with both feet. Many successful businesses today were started part-time, in someone’s home or garage. But, you should be willing to pour your heart into it 100% to deliver great work consistently over time.
Start small and dream big! The sky is the limit.
Decide on the right business for you and then get started! With time, hard work and determination (and lots of love!) you can definitely build a wildly successful, purposeful and profitable business, and create a life you truly love!
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