5 Things Every Entrepreneur Should Know
There is a saying that I just love.
“The definition of an entrepreneur is a willingness to work 16 hours a day, to avoid working 8 hours a day for someone else. “
I have been an entrepreneur for over 3 years now and I must say, it was the best decision I have ever made. While there are many reasons to try to go it on your own, for me it was a two year old that did not do well in daycare and a job that I hated. I had skills but found myself in a dead end job that barely paid the bills and made me miserable. I never got to see my toddler and I knew there had to be a better way to do things. So here are some of my tips and tricks to entrepreneurship that I have learned along the way.
While many may want to believe that working for yourself involves late mornings and pajamas at noon. This is really not the case. I will not say it is never the case, but working for yourself or from home, can be far more work than working for someone else. When you're hourly for someone else, you get to clock out and go home. All the phone calls and emails can be taken care of by someone else, or the next day. When you work for yourself, there is no one else and there is no clocking out. Not at first anyways.
So be prepared to work. Be prepared to probably work more than you do now or when you worked for someone else. There is more pressure to do well because you won’t make money if you don’t.
There is more risk to working for yourself, no matter what you decide to do and what skill you have. When you work for someone else, they take the losses. They take the rewards when business is well, but when it is not, they are the ones losing money. You may get fired, but while you work, you will be paid.
An entrepreneur does not have this luxury. If business is slow, you will have to worry about eating and paying rent. While you cannot be fired, you are not guaranteed to get a check each week or month. But like all investments, with more risk, comes more reward. When things are great, it all goes to your bottom line. There is no person to swoop in and take that away. It is yours. So it is a risk, but it can also be a huge payoff.
Because of all the extra risk, you should really think of doubling the amount you have in your emergency fund. There will be no unemployment to help you when you fall, so you need to have at least 6 months in an emergency fund. A million things can happen and sometimes it feels like the universe is kicking you when you’re down. So with all the extra risk and reward, planning is a bit more important.
When I told my family that I had quit my job and was going to work for myself, everyone flipped. It is not what most people will choose, so you will get all these comments. I have also noticed that people may be a little jealous of the fact that you do not have grind the same way, so there may be a lot of negativity. Many of my family claim that I am retired because I live off of passive income mainly. I kind of like the idea of retirement before thirty, however it is not quite the way it is.
Vacations and Days Off
Now, when your business gets going, this may leave you more time to do things that you really want to do. For me and my family, we like to travel and working for myself allows me to take a vacation whenever I want to. There is a certain freedom to be able to shoot off to Florida for 4 weeks in December, that you just won’t get working a 9 to 5 for someone else. Those days of giving three months notice for your vacation are in the past. And I certainly don’t miss them.
Same with days off. You can work around anything from a birthday party, anniversary or your child’s first tee-ball game. You won’t have to miss all these wonderful events with some planning and the freedom of being an entrepreneur.