When it comes to owning your own business, the discussion usually revolves around the positives. You’re your own boss. If you don’t have the time today, it’s not a problem. You control your hours. Because it’s a field or industry that you chose, the work satisfaction is higher than in your regular job.
On the other side of the coin, it’s not all rainbows and unicorns. No matter the nature of business, there’s bound to be trade-offs. Whether you’ve decided to seize automotive business opportunities or open a clothing store, you’ll have to compromise sooner or later.
To get a glimpse, here are best and worst parts of a business owner’s lifestyle:
Most, if not all, companies have strict policies on attendance. You have to be in the office at a certain time and take breaks for a few minutes. Then, if you have plans for a vacation, you have to make sure that they’ll allow you to take the time off. If you’re the business owner, you don’t have to do any of that. You can hire someone else, temporarily or permanently, to take care of things while you’re away. You decide how early or late the operating hours will be. If you’re not a morning person, then you can open later than usual. Depending on the nature of your business, you can even work remotely. If it’s an online venture, you can work while you’re in the beach, park, or cafe. With only need decent internet connection and a power supply, you can work anywhere.
When you work for a company, every decision is scrutinized. Each project has to pass through hoops to progress. While it’s done to ensure quality, it can cause unnecessary delays and roadblocks. On the other hand, if you’re the one in control, the decision-making process is shorter. You don’t have to work overtime just to impress your boss. You can lead your business to the direction that you want.
One of the biggest reasons why people quit is because of the workplace environment. Studies have shown that it also leads to lower productivity in the office. That’s not a problem when you’re the owner of the business. There’s no need to play office politics. You’re in direct control of the workplace because you’re the boss. The small size of the business also makes it easier for you to handle complex situations. There aren’t complicated dynamics to worry about. You can also hire other people who you get along with.
In the beginning stages of entrepreneurship, it’s common to feel lonely. Unless you have the means to hire someone that can help you, you’ll have to organize everything. Even if you do have some help, you still have to be on top of the responsibilities. If you work from home, it’s easy to feel cooped up and isolated. As a regular employee, you had other co-workers to talk to about job woes. As a small business owner, you don’t get the same luxury.
In an interview with the U.S. Small Business Administration, entrepreneur Lindsey Germono advises other business owners to find their own “tribe”. She explains that fellow entrepreneurs can relate to your problems and give advice. Unlike non-business owners, they know what it’s like to be in your shoes.
To be able to connect with other business owners, you can join groups. In some communities, there are organizations for local business owners. Ask around if there’s a chamber of commerce in your area. You can also link up with fellow entrepreneurs by going to conferences. Make sure to follow social media pages about your field of work. They usually post details about the conferences months ahead.
2. Financial Instability
The downside of starting any kind of business is the risk that it might fail. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, only two-thirds of businesses last for at least two years. Even if your business does survive for years, it would take some difficulty to get there. You would likely experience some financial hardships along the way. As you’re waiting for your business to take off, you may have to make some adjustments to your lifestyle.
To reduce the chances of monetary issues, there are a couple of things you can do. The Harvard Business Review recommends balancing your business venture and regular job. You can also set aside money that you’ll only use for emergency.
When it comes to entrepreneurship, it’s important to take a look at things from different perspectives. It’s easy to see the positive results but don’t forget to consider the possible downsides.