September 16, 2010, 6:00 am

Are You Too Afraid To Start Your Own Business?

by: MD    Category: Alternative Income
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Are you interested in starting your own business? Are you tired of the corporate grind? If you’re still reading then chances are that you’re interested in starting your own side business. Of course we all live in the real world and “following your passions” is only easy in the movies. This is why I wanted to look at the major issues that go along with venturing off on your own and how you can avoid them:

Money- How will I pay the bills?

This is of course the greatest obstacle for most. We all need money to survive. We need to money to pay the bills and to put food on the table. It’s completely irresponsible when I read some sort of entrepreneurial article that suggests you quit your job. How foolish is that? Instead of dwelling over money matters for a long time, let’s look at how-to get over money concerns:

  • Moonlight. From all of the books that I’ve read on entrepreneurship, it seems that the authors always started off on the side. This is probably the last thing you want to hear, but if you want to be successful and safe, you’re going to have to lose some sleep to get your side gig off the ground. Hopefully the moonlighting phase won’t last too long. You just need to get past the dip where you’re struggling to focus and stay awake during those late nights.
  • Multiple incomes. This is where a diversification of income really comes in handy. Whether you maintain a part-time job, hold dividend yielding investments, a rental property, or any other form of income, it can really help you ease in with starting your own hustle.
  • Save up. This sort of ties in with moonlighting and multiple incomes. You can slowly build up a savings buffer so that you can have your expenses 100% covered in the event that your business venture doesn’t earn you enough money.

Time- Where will I find the time to get things done?

This is likely the most challenging aspect of venturing off on your own because we’re all just inherently horrible at time management. When you work in a 9-5 job your day is usually scheduled out for you. When you start working from home, you might be up until 4AM getting stuff done, and then wake up at 1PM for breakfast. Instead of throwing feel good advice out, I wanted to share two simple, yet effective time management tips:

  1. Just find time. I don’t want to come off as a smartass, but sometimes you just need to find time. Whether this means you do work on your Blackberry on your lunch break or you sleep an hour less (or even stop reading this article). There’s 24 hours in a day and there’s going to be times where you just need to find more time somehow.
  2. The 80/20 rule. I’m sure everyone has heard of Pareto’s Principle in some shape or form. For time management it goes like this; focus your energy and time on the activities that will generate the greatest amount of results for you. For example, if you want to start a blog, it’s the actual writing that will generate most results. The higher the quality, the more likely that readers will share your articles with others. Readers won’t care about your Facebook profile or your Tip’d social media account. It’s all about focusing on what matters, and taking care of the rest if you have time left over.

Income- How will I make money?

Once you get over your own financial situation and the amount of time that you have in a given day, you then might begin to stress about how exactly you will generate income from your new business. Here are a few tips to ease your income fears a bit:

Search for demand. Google Adwords Keyword ToolClickbank, or Wordtracker Keyword Tool to see where the demand stands. A quick search for the phrase “gmat” in Wordtracker displayed all kinds of interesting results. This means that if you just wrote your GMAT test and are looking to help others, then you could see what areas in this field people are searching for help. You could offer GMAT help or GMAT sample tests to generate some revenue since the demand is clearly there.

How much are others making? I’m sure we’ve all heard that a rising tide floats all ships. If you want to get into a field where there’s lots of demand and others are making good money, then this could calm you down a bit as you fear your income situation. Being the first ever Facebook relationship expert can be a bit scarier than helping students with their GMAT test.

My question at the end of the day to you is, what do you have to be afraid of? Steve Jobs said it best:

“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking, and don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart,…you’ll know when you find it.”

Img src: rpm12

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Comments

I have had a number of discussions in starting a business in my fields but I have found that the chemistry wasn’t there. For a number of them, the business is going. Did I miss an opportunity? Maybe and then maybe not. I have someone else looking for partners again. In some cases, having a partner can really help just like moonlighting on the side. Unfortunately, due to employment contract, I am unable to moonlight in my field without legal action.

My biggest weight is my loans and I am supporting a wife and 2 kids. If I was to make the leap of faith, they would all need to be on board. I am blogging and learning to do something different from my work as I want to figure out my road to financial independence!

I should add that the opportunities that come along for me, require me to leave my current employment. The potential profits come from a large company buying the small company after 4 or 5 years and you profit with millions. (that’s the pattern for the industry anyways) Leaving my employment can be challenging when supporting a wife and 2 kids. As such, I am looking at other opportunities while being employed. The payoff is smaller but it is moving forward and looking for a way out of the rat race.

Having something on the side seems like the most realistic thing to do. Unless I have an amazing backup plan and a bunch of money saved up in case it doesn’t work out, I don’t think I could take the leap.

Once you build up something on the side, if it grows enough, you’ll be able to tell whether it will be a realistic endeavor or not.

I am always afraid of getting a customer base. It is one thing to have a great product and reasonable prices but if there is not enough people out their to buy it… your sunk.

hi financial blogger i have a few questions to ask u
what kind of college did u got to for undergrad and what was your major?
is your base salary 6 figures or does it include bonuses,alternative income, etc.?
what kind of job do u have and your title?
is your job stressful?
how many hours do u work a week and how often is weekend work required?
i am a freshman at college in usa and plan on majoring in finance and in the future a mba in finance is this a smart move?
what would u recommend me majoring in as undergrad to be prepared for mba finance?
what advice can u give me to make 6 figures by age 28 as u have?
thanks for any feedback u may have and sorry for so many questions i just want to no how to be successful in life at young age.

also i think the way u are being smart about making money and setting goals and would love to follow in your footsteps one day 🙂

by: The Financial Blogger | September 19th, 2010 (7:49 am)

@ Calvin
#1 I did a mix bachelor degree in finance and marketing
#2 base salary is under 6 figures, my bonus and my company income brings me to 6 figures.
#3 Financial Planner (CFP)
#4 30 hours for main job, about 15 hours for my company. no weekend required
#5 This is what I did (bachelor in finance, MBA in financial services), I can’t say that I don’t like my career so far 😉
#6 I would suggest you start workign in the finance industry before applying for the MBA.
#7 have a good “day job” and start a sideline company based on your passion!

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to shoot me an email!

Cheers,

Mike

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This is a subject that I’ve teased around for a while, but I don’t think my financial foundation is strong enough to support something like this yet. So far my forays into alternate sources of income have included a blog and writing a few mobile phone applications. Hopefully in the near future I’ll be in a solid enough position to take advantage of this information. Thanks for sharing!