This has nothing to do with the economy and everything to do with the way you set the stage for your new career as an entrepreneur. While it may be tempting to jump now, your transition to entrepreneur will have more bumps than necessary if your starting position is off. I’ve outlined four positions that put you at a disadvantage if you don’t address them before you walk you out the door.
The four worst times to leave your job to start a business are:
1. When you are not prepared mentally.
Have you developed the habits of mind to think like a business owner? Are you prepared for the isolation, to be a trailblazer, to make tough decisions about your resources, time, and even your associations? Have you been actively learning the skills and traits that differentiate a business owner from a hobbyist? Have you planned out the goals and marketing strategy for your business or are you jumping out of emotion – the excitement of having a new idea. Take the time to understand the many hats that a business owner has to wear and the strength of mind it takes to persevere through the rough spots in making the transition.
2. When your emotions are out of sync.
It’s the second time you’ve been passed over. The third time you’ve put in a 60 hour week in the two months. It’s the fourth time your boss has criticized your work while overlooking the contributions you’ve made. If you’re in a bad work environment chances are you feel like the overloaded camel dreading the weight of the next straw that just might break you. Emotionally you may feel depressed, irritated, and frustrated on a daily basis. Making a transition when your emotions are in such a frail state is a bad move. You will lack the energy and clear vision you need to make wise decisions. Also missing will be the confidence and resiliency required to when challenges arise. It can be hard, but restoring your emotional health before you step away from your job will increase your chances of starting and staying strong.
3. When you are not spiritually connected.
What’s your motive for making this move? If previous changes in your career based on external factors like money, opportunity, or location have not ultimately satisfied you, consider going deeper when thinking about your next move. It’s possible that the freedom, unlimited earning potential, and flexibility that becoming your own boss can give you will still not satisfy you if you have not truly tapped into your purpose. If you believe that each person, including you, has been created for a purpose you may very well find yourself off the mark again if you haven’t taken into account your calling or what I like to call your “Authentic Life’s Work.” This means getting close to the source – your Creator, and digging deep to uncover the gifts and talents you can use to serve your customers.
4. When you don’t have a solid financial foundation.
Great ideas, great passion, and even a clear purpose still require some level of funding. While you may not be ready for a venture capitalist just yet, you still need to pay your bills, eat, and take care of yourself and family in addition to investing in your business. Even if your idea requires little startup capital, having at least 6 months of expenses covered relieves you from operating your business under the pressure of needing money immediately. The more desperate you are for money, the more likely you will take projects from less than ideal clients or you will cut your prices, diminishing the perceived value for your services or goods. Having a solid financial position, keeps you from risky business that ultimately threatens your reputation and peace of mind.
Recap: Launching Smart
Before you launch out on your own you want to pay special attention to your position mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and financially. Take the time to stabilize, plan and prepare so that you can learn from the journey of launching your own business instead of struggling through it.
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- Launch Talk Episode 79: Even Your Part-time Business Needs a Business Plan – September 25, 2013