Let’s take a look at what it takes to succeed as a Local Small Business Owner
Listen to the Podcast Episode Below or Feel Free to Read Below:
You want to quit your “day” job and start your own local small business. Maybe you love animals and think how cool it would be to own your own mobile pet grooming business? Maybe you are the neighborhood fix it guy and think you should open up your own handyman business? Or maybe you think it would be neat to own the local ice cream store like I once did. Or maybe you are just bored to death of doing the same thing day after day.
Well, just because you can, it doesn’t necessarily mean you should…..
Do It With Passion Or Don’t Do It At All!
One of the lessons that I learned a long time ago was that I was capable of doing pretty much any job. In my mind I was superwoman and could do anything I decided to tackle. After all, I hated to fail which meant I liked to succeed. There were times throughout my career when I saw I job I wanted to do, knew I could do but when I finally got it I realized I really didn’t want to do it after all. You see, it wasn’t what I had built up in my mind. I didn’t get the enjoyment out of it that I thought I would. I realized I had no passion to do it once I got it. I didn’t get the “high” I thought I would. Maybe this has happened to you?
This is a trap I don’t want you to fall in. Making the decision to go into business for yourself is much different from taking on a job. There is a lot more commitment and a heck of a lot more at risk. At least at the job you hate you are getting paid. When you are self-employed and you hate it, odds are you will not be making money doing it either.
Let’s jump in to decide if this is the right journey to you
If you love helping people that’s a great start. Let’s face it, a local small business means you will be dealing with the “local” community. If you understand that customer service, make that excellent customer service that is, will be your secret sauce in helping you stand out from your competition then you are half way there. If you are willing and able to bust your ass every single day then that’s a great start also. If you know the difference between a job and a business then that’s an excellent start! If you are willing to acknowledge your weakness as well as your strengths, and do what it takes to address them, then you are serious about making your business succeed. If you can say yes to these four areas, then you are definitely on the right track to be a successful local small business owner!
A “Job” vs A “Business”
If you currently have an 8 to 5 job this transition will probably be harder for you than anyone else. Most small local businesses will bleed into needing to work nights and weekends. Let’s face it, if your customer is working 8 to 5 they usually can only use your services when they get home which means you will be working nights and weekends when they are home. Granted not all small businesses will need to, but the vast majority will. You need to ask yourself will yours be one of them. Plus if your competition doesn’t work when customers are at home, then this might give you a competitive edge because you do work around their schedule! Think about how you can leverage this to get your business up and running.
With a job you know you’re going to get paid every two weeks or so. You pretty much can count on what you’re going to financially have coming in for bills. When you are self-employed and own a local small business, sometimes you get paid after the job. Sometimes you will need to buy supplies and you will break even. Sometimes you won’t get paid at all and now you’re operating at a loss. When you own your own business you must be prepared for any of these three situations. But if you run your business well it’s pretty nice having money on a regular basis but it does mean you need to budget because you don’t want to get to bill time to find out you nickel and dime your money away and can’t pay the rent or electric. Or worse, feed your family.
Which brings us to another key point: self-discipline. Self-discipline will play into a lot of your time and energy of your new small business. Not only will you need to have the self-discipline to not spend money as you get it. You will need to have self-discipline to get up each and every day and work “on” your business just as much as you work “in” your business. Without the fear of getting fired, some people just can’t get up and hit the floor running without that pressure of losing their job. You must be harder on yourself than any boss could ever be!
You will need the discipline to bite your tongue when a customer is upset. Too often we want to snap back vs shut up and listen and resolve the issue. This isn’t a battle. This isn’t about your ego and you need disciplined to keep that in check. You will need to be disciplined to do what is right for the situation even when you feel you are right and the customer might be wrong. I’m not saying they are always right, what I’m saying is… What is the right solution to the problem and being disciplined to know the difference.
You MUST Have Passion
Finally you need to have passion! You need to be so fired up that success is what drives you! Failure is not an option! There will be days when you will wonder if you’re doing the right thing but your passion must push you through to realize yes you are! Your passion is what will give you that self-discipline we discussed earlier. Your passion for great customer service will ensure you always do the right thing. Your passion for knowledge will ensure you always are learning and growing. Your passion to be the best and offer the best will be what makes you successful!
If you aren’t passionate about life, passionate about being successful, passionate about being the best, then keep the day job. Passion is what will get you through the tough times. Passion is what will keep you going when times are tough and passion is what will cause you to find solutions to any problems that pop up. Passion shows and your customers will feel your passion (or lack thereof) and it will either cause them to recommend you or cause them to tell their family and friends to run!
These obviously aren’t the only things that will determine if you are ready to make the leap from “employee” to business owner. But they will at least let you know if you will have what it takes to at least give it a great shot!
For more questions to ask yourself, check out our 13 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Starting a Small Business. If everything looks great between the challenges we gave you here and those 13 questions, then you are ready to start that local small business!!!
What are you waiting for?
Time to Start identifying your Passion!
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My Recommended Bookkeeping Program for Local Small Business Owners: Freshbooks Link
Why? Helps you invoice quicker and more importantly, get paid quicker. Let’s you know when your clients have opened the email and they even help send reminders. Clients / customers can pay right from their phone or computer. Give it a Try: Freshbooks
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