Have you ever dreamed of working for yourself? Self-employment is a popular dream many people have, but how do you turn that dream into a reality? To help you move forward to becoming self-employed, here are 5 important steps to take.
Personal assessment. Deciding to go into business for yourself is an exciting time—and a scary time. As you begin your journey towards self-employment, take a moment to do an internal evaluation and determine what skills you have that are transferable and which industries you have a great working knowledge of. As you consider these skills, here are some questions to ask yourself:
- What would you like to spend your time doing, what product or service would you like to sell?
- What are the risks (financially and otherwise) you’re willing to take?
The more you can identify and answer these types of questions, the better you’ll be able to focus on your business plan. If you’re not sure what kind of business you want to start, but still want to be self-employed, explore trade shows or search out various industries in areas you think you’d be interested in. The important thing to remember is to get as much information as you can so you can make a well-informed decision. As you weigh your options remember to choose something that not only excites you, but challenges and grows you.
Evaluate the business. Now that you’ve narrowed in on what you want to do, now is the time to think of the logistics. What types of people do you want to sell to? Who is your competition? Take some time to talk to potential customers about what types of service they want to see that they aren’t finding elsewhere. Is there something missing you could fill?
Make it legal. Once you’ve decided to go into business for yourself, it’s important you form your business, legally. Some options to consider:
Create your business plan. In most cases, you’ll need financial help to turn your dream into a reality. By having a plan when going in, you can be better prepared when talking to investors, friends, relatives, and even the bank about financial your endeavor. As you draft a business plan, some questions to consider:
- How much money will you need to start?
- What challenges or roadblocks should you be on the lookout for?
- How long will it take you to start making a profit?
Once you’ve established your business plan and gotten financing, now is the time to find the location for your business, advertising strategy, and other important factors.
Are you self-employed? Tell us about your journey and what you learned during your experience. What do you wish you’d known better starting your own business?