Tough Questions to Answer before Going Self-Employed

If you are considering starting your own business, there are some tough, real-world questions you should probably ask yourself first.

Are you looking for an easier life?

Lots of us think about starting our own business as a means of escape. The thought of being your own boss might be appealing if you’re stressed or otherwise unhappy with your current job.

Running your own business doesn’t make work-related stress go away. If anything, it brings a different sort into your life! Working longer hours and the stress of not knowing whether you’ll make a success of things can be just as draining.

Is it only about the money?

One of the most common reasons why people start a business is to earn more money. With business, there isn’t the same cap on your earnings that you get with a traditional job. While there’s no guarantee you’ll become rich, it is definitely possible.

However, if the only thing you care about is the money, you may struggle to run a business unless you’re also passionate about it. Business requires lots of effort and energy. There are long hours and plenty of challenges along the way – all of which are much harder to work through if you’re not dedicated to what you offer.

Can you support yourself when it’s quiet?

Nothing is certain in business, especially when it comes to money and success. Even if you get off to a good start, be prepared for things to go wrong, even if only temporarily.

You could hit a quiet month, the whole market could change, new legislation could disrupt your business, supplies could be destroyed or you could even be hit by a cyber attack.

These may be the more extreme examples but the truth is,business is unpredictable and you could find yourself in a difficult month. What’s your backup plan?

Most people recommend that you put together an emergency fund for yourself which can cover three to six months worth of expenses. So many businesses have been shut down because the owner ran out of money and had to rush back into a job to support themselves. It’s well worth sticking it out with an employer whilst saving up for a safety net.

What can I add to the market?

You may have the passion, the funding, the skills and support from others – all the things you need to succeed – but is there a market for what you’ve got?

Without demand, the business isn’t going to take off. That doesn’t mean you can’t offer the same services or products as someone else, just that you’ll need to find what makes you different in order to stand out. Are you a budget or luxury version? Do you offer an online alternative? Are you developing software to make things easier for your customers, or to solve a common problem that hasn’t been solved before? Think carefully about what real value your business will add to the market.

Don’t be discouraged from pursuing your passion, but do be realistic! Learn more about Pandle, and how it can help you stay focused.