By Robert Stitt
Being an entrepreneur has its advantages. You get to be your own boss, you get to dress the way you want to dress, and work the hours you want to work. What could be better? Before you jump in with both feet, however, don’t forget to look at the other side of the coin.
You may be the boss, but you still have to answer to the customers, and your suppliers, and the bank, and so on. In short, there are some things you will be giving up when you decide to tackle self-employment. Black Enterprise recently took a look at four things you have to give up when you take over the helm.
While you may have a lot of freedom but freedom can be your enemy if you don’t watch the clock. Those who are not highly disciplined may find time slipping through their fingers. Black Enterprise warned about several time killers, including surfing the internet, social media, email, and even frequent meetings.
In order to manage your time efficiently, it is important to keep a to-do list, have a clear schedule, and maximize your electronic systems. Use accounting software, personnel software, and communications software to maximize your efficiency. Also helpful is learning to delegate, and, if needed, outsourcing.
Most entrepreneurs quickly find out that their time is really not their own, it belongs to the business.
Comfort. Many new business owners are not greeted with amazing support from family and friends. In fact, they are often badgered with questions about what happens when things don’t work out. Life is often not comfortable and you go from one challenge to the next, and put out one fire only to have another arise. For many, it is this constant excitement that drives them. Others are not so thrilled with it, but to be successful, comfort often needs to be put on the back burner.
Income and Benefits. It’s not that you can’t make money as a business owner. It’s just not guaranteed, especially at first. Black Enterprise notes, “Many entrepreneurs have used their homes, personal savings, and loans from friends and family members to keep their businesses afloat. But despite the help, there are no guarantees that the business will be successful.” If you cannot afford to be without income and benefits for a time, you may need to rethink your plans.
Social Life. Remembering that your time now belongs to the company, unless your social life revolves around your business, you may be saying farewell to a few of your friends and postponing some family events, vacations, dinners, etc. Many entrepreneurs find that their life goes a completely different direction once they start their company. They find new friends who share their passions, they develop different relationships within their family, and vacations are paired with business meetings. Others cannot make the switch and things often do not work out nearly so well.
There is no doubt about it, being an entrepreneur has its advantages, but are you willing to make the sacrifices needed to give business ownership an honest try?