For many of us it is tempting to kiss our 9 to 5 jobs goodbye and take the plunge into self-employment. Wouldn’t it be great to tear off the leash your boss has been keeping you on? You are not alone.

There is something romantic about the notion of jumping ship and venturing out on your own. After all, we are constantly reminded that entrepreneurs are risk-takers.

Unfortunately, research has repeatedly shown that being a “hybrid” entrepreneur (starting your business while keeping your job) might be a better option for most.

If your business is not lucrative yet, maybe slide that resignation letter back into your drawer (for now) and consider these tips for running your own business while keeping your job:

1. Manage your time

It might seem obvious, but it is very easy to neglect your most valuable resource: time. You probably already prefer spending time working on your business instead of focusing on your office job. It’s important to hang on to your enthusiasm, but make sure you don’t spread yourself too thin.

The best advice is to make sure you keep a dairy or list of everything you need to do. Set specific, measurable and realistic goals. Goals will help you to keep your focus and prevent the wasting of precious time.

2. Work hard

You know this right? Are you sure? The only way you’re going to succeed is to work harder than you have ever worked before. To reap the rewards of being your own boss, be prepared to sacrifice evening leisure time and weekends. This is especially true if you still have a day job.

3. You don’t have to do it alone

Is there something that you’re not good at? If you don’t have the time to develop the new skills that you require, you can always hire someone to do the work for you.

If you don’t have the money to pay someone, look for someone you trust with the desired skills and ask them if they want to go into a partnership with you. If they will only be contributing in a small way, you can offer them a small percentage in your business.

You might not like the idea of giving up a part of your business, but if you do it right, three quarters of a successful, flourishing business is still better than 100% ownership of a business stuck in its start-up phase.

Getting someone to help with your new business

4. Sort out your personal finances

When you are finally ready to take that leap, you want to make sure that you are in the best possible financial position. This is easier said than done, but before you quit your job, try to do the following:

– Pay off as much of your debt as you can.
– Wherever possible, try to pay something extra on your bills.
– Cancel all unnecessary expenses before quitting your fixed income.
– Stock up on some non-perishable groceries.

5. Respect your employer

This one is very difficult. You are currently working on someone else’s dream, and they are paying you to do so. Don’t use your employer’s time or resources for your personal venture. Not only is it illegal, but if this does not work out, you still need a good reference.

6. Remember that Rome wasn’t built in a day

Epictetus said that “no great thing is created suddenly”. It is hard, but be patient. Your big break is coming. Starting a company from the ground up is not something that can be done in one day, so strap yourself in for the long haul.

7. Circle your D-date on a calendar

If your business is starting to generate an income, picking a specific date that you would like to resign will help you to stay motivated at your current job, as well as your future venture. Just remember that this is a goal and not a deadline. If you are not ready by the time you reach this date, you should be flexible enough to move your date to later.

Need more tips on starting your own business? Get advice from Sunshine Cleaning.

About The Author

Enrique Grobbelaar

Enrique is the eternal entrepreneur: his first venture was selling off his parents’ household goods at bargain prices to their neighbours at age seven. All other endeavours thus far have been entirely above board.

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