The Pros and Cons of Starting Your Own Business

Starting your own business can be the opportunity of a lifetime, but the decision isn’t always an easy one. Depending on the type of business you choose, there will be unique pros and cons associated with it that must be considered before you make the leap from employee to entrepreneur. If you’re seriously considering launching your own business venture, use this list as your guide to help you evaluate the pros and cons of starting your own business.

The Pride of Small Business Ownership

Whether you’re dreaming about working for yourself or you’ve just started down that path, one thing is clear: deciding to start your own business means facing some huge changes. There are lots of upsides to striking out on your own—but there are also some very real challenges. If you want to start a business, it can help to know what those challenges are so you can be prepared for them. Here are some of the most common pitfalls that new entrepreneurs face

Be Your Own Boss

For many, a job can be isolating. But when you’re your own boss, you can work from anywhere—in your pajamas, while taking in a baseball game or while on vacation. And since there are no bosses to report to, you don’t have any one person telling you what to do; it’s all on you. This means that if your business doesn’t take off, it’s nobody’s fault but yours. You’re also free to decide how much (or how little) time to dedicate to your startup: You can set up shop as an hourly worker or treat yourself like an entrepreneur with a staff who works around your schedule. Be careful though, you’ll only get out of it what you put into it.

When you’re your own boss, you make your own schedule. Work more or less depending on what’s going on in your life. You can have a business that allows you to spend more time with family, volunteer for causes you believe in, travel whenever you want and even pursue other interests like art or gardening. Of course, there are plenty of challenges to being self-employed—you must deal with both management tasks like filing taxes and getting insurance as well as operational ones such as marketing your business to new customers. However, if you don’t mind juggling all these tasks while maintaining a positive outlook on life, starting a business may be right for you.

Know the Challenges

Sure, you may love your job and think that starting your own business will be really fun, but it’s worth stepping back for a moment to consider why you want to start a business. Are you bored with your current position? Did you just read an inspiring book or attend a great networking event? Or is there another reason for starting a business? You can’t get what you want out of starting your own company if you don’t know what it is. Write down your top three reasons for starting your own business—and then spend some time thinking about whether they are realistic. To figure out if they are realistic, ask yourself: Are these goals likely to attract loyal customers who will continue to buy from me even after I am no longer around?

Long Hours

Even if you enjoy your work, running a business is likely to mean long hours. In fact, many entrepreneurs say that working 70 or 80 hours a week was one of their biggest fears before they started their business—and then it turned out to be true. That said, entrepreneurs tend to feel more fulfilled when they’re focused on building something they believe in. Running your own business can give you freedom and flexibility, but it can also lead to some tough decisions—like whether or not you should spend even more time working to achieve success (or just do what you love).

Unlimited Salary Potential

One of the beauties of being a business owner is that there is essentially no limit to how much money you make. The more time and effort you invest in your venture and the better results you will see. As you learn the ins and outs of running a business, that information is applicable to so much. You can always add additional products or services and continue to gradually expand on your initial business.

Poor (No) Income Security

The reality is that if you start your own business, you’re not as likely to be working for yourself ten years from now as someone who didn’t. But that doesn’t mean starting a business is bad idea – it just means there are trade-offs involved. As with anything in life, some people succeed while others fail. If you have a good idea and a solid plan, there’s nothing stopping you from seeing your entrepreneurial dream become a reality. You can make money on your own terms and reap all sorts of personal rewards along the way – whether or not you have employee-based income in ten years depends on how well prepared you are today.

No Regular Working Hours

It may sound appealing to choose your own hours, but remember that you’ll be in charge of your own schedule, meaning you’ll have to work when other people don’t. This is true whether you work from home or from an office. If regular hours are a part of your life now, it may not be easy to adjust. Before choosing self-employment, make sure you take a hard look at how much control you want over your life.

While this may seem like a blessing, it can also often be a double-edged sword. Many people think their business idea is good enough to sit back on their laurels and that it will turn into a successful business all on its own just based on its merit. No matter how great an idea is, without a solid business plan and the determination to see it through, you’ll more than likely end up empty handed.

Stressful

Being your own boss can be very stressful. As an entrepreneur, you are responsible for tasks like marketing, sales, public relations, legal compliance, operations—the list goes on. If you’re not prepared to take on that responsibility or don’t want it in your day-to-day life, think twice before launching a business. You may love coming up with new products and running a business meeting with clients; however, if you’re not committed to those tasks with 100 percent of your focus and determination, they can easily become stressors that can weigh on you.

Understand The Risks

While some people choose to start their own business to be their own boss, there are some downsides to consider. Many businesses don’t survive their first year—and that can mean a ruined credit rating, let alone lost time and money. There is also a significant risk involved in starting your own business, as you could end up without a steady paycheck if things go wrong. If you’re considering becoming an entrepreneur, take your time; research every angle; and make sure it’s really what you want. Make sure you know both sides of the story before jumping into something that can have serious consequences for your career.

Conclusion

Clearly going out on your own and starting a business can certainly have its advantages and disadvantages. While the freedom of not working for someone else and the opportunity of nearly unlimited cash flow is tempting, it’s wise to do all the research you can before make the leap to become a small business owner and quit your day job. In the meantime, be sure to acquire all the skill sets you can and continue to learn everything you can from your job. Once you’re ready, we look forward to seeing you soar, and we’ll be there for you any way we can.

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