Anyone who is looking to start their own business knows that it takes time, energy, and research. There are few entrepreneurs who can afford to just try something out and not have other income to rely on in the beginning.
Those who can are generally wealthy to begin with, while others begin with very little savings and work their way up slowly.
It takes hard work and dedication, but to be successful it is well worth it in the end. But you also need to prepared to fail, as that is simply the nature of startups and being an entrepreneur.
Here is just some of what I learned when setting up the cleaning company I run called DeluxeMaid.
1. Don’t Quit Your Day Job
When I first decided that I wanted to start my own cleaning business, I knew that I was not going to walk out of my 9-whenever (9-5s rarely exist) and into a successful business. I did, however, have the drive and discipline to do what was needed to succeed.
Unfortunately for many entrepreneurs starting out, that means working your regular job all day and then working your on new business at night. If your business must take place during the day, you might find yourself having to change industries during the day so that you can work both.
Luckily, with a cleaning business which is run entirely online, I could keep an eye on things at my regular job during the day and catch up in the evenings.
I was exhausted but I felt that a few years of burning the candle at both ends is better than being stuck in an office job that I hated.
2. Schedule All of Your Time
When you are balancing a paying gig with a new business it is vital that you manage your time well. Laziness and disorganization will kill your business faster than you can get it off the ground.
You can use a day timer, paper planner, digital planner, or just a daily to-do list, but you must not fall behind on daily tasks as the more they pile up the more frustrated you’ll become.
Besides managing and scheduling your own time, you will want to make sure that you are keeping up with work deadlines and requirements.
Losing your job before you are able to take care of yourself might be detrimental to the business too.
3. Invest in Your Future
Even when you make the leap into running your business full-time, you will not magically make a lot of money overnight. Successful businesses take time. You must keep investing time and money into your business until it becomes profitable.
You might feel like you are putting time and money into something that is slow to turn a profit, but the truth is the better you invest your time and money, the better your return will be down the line.
You are not only investing in yourself, but you are also investing in your future. For some of you, you may be investing in your children’s futures as well. Do not take for granted the ability to funnel every nickel of profit into your business.
For this reason, it is best to make sure that you have at least a year’s worth of savings to live on, because for the first 1-2, you will likely not be able to take a significant salary.
4. Believe in Yourself and Your Business
You can do this. It seems impossible and intimidating to take on at first, but you can make it. The first step is to trust yourself to make the right choices.
If you are jumping into a new business, do your homework. Research the right marketing platforms, hiring techniques and try not to blow too much on stuff that is little to no ROI, or a negative ROI.
You have to know that you are capable of running the business first and foremost, but you must also make plenty of good decisions along the way.
Whether you think you can do something or think you can’t, you are probably right. If you get caught up in self-doubt, you will never be able to grow your business to its full potential.
The Bottom Line
While running a business is never easy, it is doable. You must first believe in yourself and your product or service. Once you have the knowledge and desire to succeed, you must still be careful with your choices.
Schedule every moment of time so that you can grow your client base, work on growing your business, without burning bridges at your day job.
Once you start to see progress, you might choose to stop working, but don’t put yourself on the breadline. Your business will thrive with you in the driver’s seat full-time, but you have to take it one step at a time.
Finn Pegler is a small business owner, startup enthusiast and founder of DeluxeMaid. His other passions include tech, the environment, and politics.