Plan Ahead to Prevent Pitfalls
Making the leap to work for yourself can be daunting, scary, and maybe even terrifying.
There’s comfort that comes from a stable paycheck. If you go all-in and fail, what now? How are you going to feed your family? How will you survive?
There are a lot of people that would make amazing entrepreneurs and business owners, but that fear of failure is keeping them from pushing forward and pursing their goals and dreams. Fortunately, most of those fears can be allayed with a bit of proper prior planning.
Three Factors to Consider Before Making the Leap
The biggest issue when working for yourself is: can I afford to do this?
If you’re looking at a straight salary comparison you have to take a step back and realize your total compensation is more than just what you take home in a paycheck.
Consider Salary – Your compensation involves how much money you take home. It also includes how much you pay in taxes (working for yourself you have to pay all the FICA taxes now). It involves insurance, office perks, retirement, and vacation time. When you factor everything in, you will want to roughly double your income if working for yourself.
Money isn’t everything of course. Let’s face it, working 80+ hours a week for a bunch of money might lead to a fat bank account, but it can quickly lead to a depressing life.
Consider Time – There are two schools of thought. One claims that as an entrepreneur you work your tail off, putting in far more hours than you would if you “had a real job.” The other school of thought is that when you plan accordingly, you can actually work fewer hours and make more money.
Fluctuations happen, and you might end up working more than you desire as an entrepreneur. But if you’re working for yourself, it hits a little different.
Consider Future – Will future you always want to be an entrepreneur? Is this a stepping stone to something different? Are you able to make enough to not only meet your needs now, but save for retirement?
Sometimes being an entrepreneur means you do your own thing on the side, so that you can make sure future needs are taken care of.
How to Overcome the Fear of Branching Out
There’s a lot to process when you’re branching out on your own. There are so many considerations to, well, consider.
But here’s the best way to overcome that fear that sneaks up on everyone: join a community of like-minded people.
With a great support group, one where you can find a mentor, you have a place to turn when you have questions about what to do, how to do it, and just need someone to pat you on the shoulder and say “there, there, it will all be okay.”
The TEDxBillings community is one of those places. With a huge mix of entrepreneurs, solo-preneurs, business owners, and professionals, there are people here who are able to help guide you through the rough spots of being an entrepreneur.
Get started by following us on our Facebook page, and stay informed on what’s coming up.