Do you want to start your own business? Most of us have had that dream at one point or another haven’t we? Chucking in the day job and conducting your multi-million-pound business from a palm tree flecked beach in the tropics. Yeah, there are plenty of attractive photographs with beautiful people sitting with laptops in the sun ‘living the millionaire lifestyle‘, but the reality, at least for me was very different.
Are you currently thinking of starting your own business? If you have some great business ideas it can be very tempting to imagine yourself riding the crest of a business wave, making lots of cash off your own back and living the high life.
However, getting to this stage will require a TON of work and quite possibly YEARS of blood sweat and tears. Starting your own business os not a quick way to make easy money.
A SOLID BUSINESS PLAN
It’s not all palm trees and laptops. In fact, you’ll have to consider a whole lot of factors before you even start. You will have to be thinking about opening a business bank account and having a solid business plan. Do you want to be a sole trader or limited company? Who will your potential customers be, and what about a company website, marketing and social media presence?
All these things cost money and time and will most likely have to be in place before you even get started.
And that’s just the fun stuff. Other hard-headed and practical things that will also have to be considered are national insurance, customer service capabilities and venture capital possibilities.
But let’s cut to the chase. As someone who has previously started my own business, here are six good reasons not to. That’s not to say you shouldn’t, I just want to make sure that you have a clear picture before you resign from your job and start down this particular road.
6 REASONS NOT TO START YOUR OWN BUSINESS
#1 It’s Lonely
It wasn’t until I started working from home that I realised just how much I missed the buzz of the office. Humans are social creatures and it must take a very special person to work in isolation and MAKE IT HAPPEN. Of course, social media has changed the landscape immeasurably over the past decade or so, but the fact remains. It is extremely tough to stay motivated sitting on your own at the kitchen table.
#2 The lines between your home and work lives will start to blur
I worked from the kitchen table (as I’m told is where so many entrepreneurs including Jeff Bezos started their businesses). And whilst you have flexible working hours etc, you may find that your working hours start to creep into your home hours. A nice thing about going out to an office and commuting, in general, is that it works as a ‘buffer’ between your working life and home life.
There’s none of that if your home is your office. Indeed it can be quite perturbing sitting at home attempting to relax and looking over and seeing a pile of work for tomorrow sitting next to your workstation,
#3 You will probably fail
The stats don’t lie. According to The Telegraph, 60% of new businesses go bust within 3 years. And whilst failing at something then getting back on your horse is an admirable trait, it doesn’t pay very well. So just bear in mind that from the start, your chances are worse than 50/50.
#4 Your friends and family will think you are doing nothing
“If you’re not doing anything today can you nip down to the shops?” An actual request that was directed at me whilst I was working from home. And if you have kids, you will no doubt have to do lots of drop-offs and pickups during your ‘working’ day. One or two diversions don’t seem a lot, but one or two per day all add up to hours and days of lost time and revenue for your new startup.
#5 There’s no safety net
What if you get ill or have an accident? If you’re a sole trader you will be lost! There’s no sick pay or benefits when you’re running your own business. You will either have to work through the pain or go poor. A tough decision and not very enjoyable at all!
#6 It’s your life
Do you want to spend your life in solitude? A massive part of your life is your time spent at work. Think of all the incredible things that have happened to people when they’ve been at work. Neil Armstrong stepping onto the moon for the first time – that was his job. Bobby Moore lifting The World Cup in 66 – that was his job. And they wouldn’t have made a great fist of these things on their own sitting at a kitchen table. In short -there’s a whole massive world out there with lots of crazy people just waiting to meet you. You might not have such great experiences going it alone.
At the end of the day if you think you have got the best business model ever and you just need to do this. Then don’t let anyone stand in your way. It might even work out ok for you, even if you do fail. However, carefully consider just what you are letting yourself in for before you jump with two feet.
It may also be a good idea to start your business off whilst still working full time for your boss. In fact, this is something that serial entrepreneur, Gary Vaynerchuk recommends. Then if you feel you are building some momentum you may be able to take that big leap into the unknown.
Photo by bruce mars on Unsplash