Starting Your Own Business or Not? Don’t Throw the Baby out with the Bathwater
If you are like a lot of people, the pandemic had at least one positive benefit: it got you out of that old job and forced you into starting your own business just like you always dreamed of doing. You finally got a chance to tell the boss to take that job and… offer it to someone who might appreciate it more, or some version of that. However it happened, you’re out and free to do what you want, when you want, the way you want.
What you have to be careful not to do is throw the baby out with the bathwater. Not everything about corporate life is bad. Just ask the millions of people who left to start their own business, then returned to the corporate office once again. No matter how much of a grind it was, there were good things about it such as a steady and predictable pay check that covered all the bills with enough left over for pizza. There are many things beyond a regular paycheck you should hang onto. Here are three:
A Good Break Room
When you worked in an office, you looked forward to getting up from the desk and sitting in the well-stocked break room. After all, that is where the endless coffee was. Now, you can even have a coffee subscription for your home office break room as you had at your old job. Your need for a good break isn’t any different when working from home. Not taking proper breaks is one of the most common errors people make when running their own business, in or out of an office.
If you are working from home, you need to get up from your desk and take the same 15 minute break that you would have normally taken when working for someone else. You need the same snacks that refreshed you at work. Now that you control the break room, you can enjoy even better snacks. You also need to be more active during the day. When you take a work break, get out of the house and walk around the block a couple of times. You can also take the bicycle out for a spin. You don’t have to go far and you don’t have to work yourself too hard. Any physical activity to keep the neurons firing will help you take better breaks and do better work.
When creating the career of your dreams, don’t forget to set goals that you can track. When you are working for someone else, they usually have certain goals set for you. If you are in sales, you know all about having sales goals. You are familiar with the sales funnel and how to keep it full. There is always some metric that a supervisor uses to see how well you are living up to the company’s expectations. You never want to fall too far behind those expectations because there is always someone else who will do better. Don’t give your company reason to go out and find that someone else.
Working for yourself doesn’t free you of goals. If anything, it should intensify those goals. If you are routinely meeting your goals, they are probably not high enough. When you do meet your goals, you should reward yourself just like you expected your supervisor to reward you. Granted, giving yourself a trophy would be weird. But you should have a system in place for making goals, achieving them, and celebrating the achievement.
A Better Internet Connection
If your fast internet connection is slow because your entire family is at home watching TV, viewing YouTube videos, and playing Dungeon Craft Extreme, you need to get a separate line that is only used for work. You simply cannot afford to be inefficient at work because of your internet connection. That is no longer an acceptable excuse, not that it ever was. Your internet connection is your OPEN sign. Do whatever it takes to keep your business open.
Now that you are the man, you can no longer stick it to the man. You have to take care of yourself and your business by giving yourself a proper break room to take a proper break, maintaining goals and accountability, and working with the most reliable internet connection you can get. And that’s just the start. So consider all the trade-offs before you leap!