Self-Employment Is on the Rise
The results of a recent Gallup poll are in: 57% of Americans would rather be self-employed than work for someone else. While every job has its frustrations, being self-employed has some definite advantages. With outsourcing, downsizing, unexpected mergers, and other unpleasant workplace surprises becoming more and more common, self-employment provides some sense of being in control over one’s future. If you can’t depend on an employer to treat you as more than a worker bee anyway, or if you feel as dispensable as used chewing gum, you may want to consider becoming your own boss.
Here are just some of the reasons self-employment could be good for you:
- You’ll have the flexibility to work your own hours.
- You can choose where you work.
- There is a good possibility you will make more money.
- You’ll have the satisfaction of seeing your own ideas succeed (instead of having someone else take credit for them).
- You can choose who you work with-or don’t.
- You can leave the constraints of corporate politics behind.
What does it take to be a self-employed success?
Is it the right fit for you?
Can you deal with some risk?
Perhaps the biggest thing that keeps people from starting a business of their own is the vision of the disappearing paycheck. A good way to deal with this fear is “Don’t quit your day job.” It may be a bit tough for a while to work at your old job while you get your own business off the ground, but it’s a technique many have used to succeed. Another possibility is to save up enough money for six months’ living expenses before you start your new venture. That way, you can devote your full attention to turning it into a money-making proposition.
Are you resourceful?
Networking and building relationships is one of the main pathways to success for the self-employed. Make a list of all the people you know right now who would be helpful to you if you became self-employed. Everyone you know is a potential source of revenue for your business. Introduce yourself to other small business owners. Join community organizations. Make contacts at Job Fairs. Scour the Internet. Check the yellow pages and the newspaper, and make a list of people and organizations that may be of help to you.
Can you listen and observe?
As a self-employed person, you won’t be simply trotting off to work at the same predictable job every day. It’s important that you listen to what’s happening in your neighborhood, your community, and in the business market in general. What are the trends? What do people seem to want or need? Being able to respond to wants and needs makes you valuable and will bring you revenue. Doing a good job will increase word-of-mouth advertising. It’s especially effective in small enterprises where you may not have a lot of money for promotion.
You must also listen to your clients. Encourage them to ask you questions about anything they don’t understand. Another kind of listening that is helpful is the ability to read between the lines of what clients are saying.
Are you energetic and positive?
Some people swear that in a corporate job, attitude is everything-that you can get away with almost anything if you convince them you’re a team player and that you really care about the company. As a self-employed person, you should be able to project an energetic, positive attitude about your own company. If you can sound successful and upbeat from the get-go, you’re halfway there.
Do you have self-discipline?
People who work at home love to joke about the “long commute” from the bedroom to the computer room. Every day of the week is Casual Friday. While a much more relaxed atmosphere and dress code are certainly major advantages of being self-employed, you will still need to designate a period of time for work, and you will need to stick to it. The great thing is that you’ll be the one to decide how long and when you will work.
Are you willing to learn?
You don’t have to have an MBA to be a self-employed success. There are plenty of successfulpeople who didn’t even finish high school. But you must be willing to learn the things you need to know to run your business. This could mean learning a new computer program, developing a basic bookkeeping system, or learning to write sales letters. There is plenty of help available on the Internet, and you can probably take some relatively inexpensive adult education classes at the local high school or community college if you need to. If your business really takes off, you can hire other people to do some of the tasks you feel are wasting your time. Once again, the Internet is a great source for accounting, legal, and writing services.
How to Get Started
If you decide to launch your own business, the first step you should take is some self-examination and some research. What are your strengths, and how much time do you want to devote to your business? What is there a demand for? What business would you enjoy?
We’re here to help!
Fill out the form on the main page, and I will provide you with additional information about the opportunity that is truly shaping my life and allowing me the freedom to live out my dreams. I look forward to hearing from you!