Want to be Your Own Boss?
In The Career Coward’s Guide to Career Advancement, now on bookshelves, author Katy Piotrowski says that some people can be their own bosses, but others can’t. We asked her for Five Signs You’re Not Ready to be Your Own Boss. Here they are.
1. Managing your time well is difficult for you.
If you have trouble prioritizing and following through on the assignments your boss gives you now, imagine how difficult it will be to set and keep to deadlines when no one is looking over your shoulder. Before you make the leap, challenge yourself to execute your current assignments as if they were for your own business. When you find you’re in a good groove fulfilling your current commitments, then you’ll be more ready to make the leap.
2. You’re leery of marketing yourself.
At least half of a business’ efforts, especially at the start, needs to be devoted to promoting your offerings. Think creatively about ways you can promote your company that also fit your personal style. Social media and Internet marketing now make it so much easier for shy business owners to advertise themselves.
3. You have trouble answering, “What do you charge?” Talking about fees is frequently nerve wracking for upstart entrepreneurs.
Research and determine your pricing structure before you hang out your shingle. Also, practice answering the, “What do you charge?” question out loud with supporters, to overcome price-talk jitters.
4. When you think of doing the bookkeeping for the business, you cringe.
For the first few years, it’s you’ll be wearing many hats as you build your business. Cash flow is the lifeblood of an enterprise, and you’ll need to keep your hands in it for a while. Take a deep breath, sign up for a QuickBooks class, and learn more.
5. You haven’t yet worked out a 2-year survival budget.
Many new businesses receive little or no income in the first years…and in fact are spending from savings or a loan just to get started. Rather than crossing your fingers that it will all work out, figure out in advance how you can survive if you’re without a profit for a long stretch.