Transitioning from employee to entrepreneur is no easy task, and it can often be difficult to discern when the jump is appropriate. Everyone wants to make their own schedule. Everyone wants to be their own boss. Everyone wants to make more money—but does that mean everyone should be an entrepreneur?
Entrepreneurship is hard work and carries a risk of failure. It’s an exercise in resilience, innovation, and determination. Entrepreneurship is certainly not for everybody, and that’s okay! That said, if you find yourself relating to some of the statements below, it may be time to reassess your career and strike out on your own.
You love what you do, but not your job.
If you are passionate about your industry, but not crazy about how your company operates, it may be time to take a step back and assess if you could do it better yourself. For instance, if you work in finance, and enjoy helping people secure the capital they need, but disagree with how the actual lending process plays out, then perhaps you should consider opening up your own firm where you can actually make a difference outside the limits of company policy.
That said, you should carefully consider whether the problems you’re having couldn’t be solved by another company. Research the industry that you’re in and see how your company compares to its peers. If you find that there’s a beneficial practice that hasn’t been widely adopted, you may have just found a niche that you can fill with a new business.
You feel unsatisfied with holding lower-ranking positions.
Over time, individuals interested in leadership will chafe in positions of subordination. While entry-level jobs are the general reality for those just starting their careers, many will find themselves always wanting more, leading to feelings of inadequacy in the long term.
Consider what you want out of your career. “Where do you see yourself in five years?” is the general cliche, but if you’re at a company with little opportunity for advancement and are striving for a management position, it may be time to consider taking on the responsibility of entrepreneurship.
You’re willing to take risks.
As exciting as the switch to entrepreneurship is, anyone pursuing this path must realize that they will likely need to face setbacks and skepticism. “Setbacks” can mean any number of things; but it’s important to realize that you will likely have to course correct multiple times to keep your business active and productive. But that’s the beauty of entrepreneurship! You’re not bound by the conventions of a larger business, and are more free to try new things and forge your own path.
You enjoy doing multiple jobs.
As you build your business, you have to accept that there’s a lot more responsibility to take on than the average employee. This may seem obvious, but many entrepreneurs struggle with the mindset that they are now responsible for moving the business forward instead of just doing their old jobs independently.
To acclimate to this upscaling of work, you’ll need to keep a strict schedule. Sometimes, it may feel like bailing out a sinking ship, but if you learn to effectively manage your time, you have a great basis for a business. In a similar vein, money management is also important; your business will live or die based on your ability to calculate costs and deal with expenses.
You have the backing.
Although entrepreneurship is often associated with loneliness and self-reliance, entrepreneurs need others to grow and foster progress. This support can come in many forms, including investors, industry experts, and fellow entrepreneurs. At first, you will likely need to convince others that your business is worth backing, which can be difficult when attempting to implement an untested idea.
However, this forced dependency on others’ capital can prove fruitful, as it opens the door to outside perspectives.
You want control of your career.
Entrepreneurship can be a daunting, yet rewarding undertaking. Despite the possibility of failure, you may be cut out to be an entrepreneur if the appeal of working independently outshines any risk involved.
Your business may not be perfect; in fact, one of the biggest mistakes you can make is thinking that it needs to be. However, success as an entrepreneur means changing based on feedback and adapting to suit your situation.