Why do you want to start your own business? Some of us have a passion for something that we want to share with the world. Others want more money than their annual 5% increase, while some people simply don’t have a choice.
For me, it has always been an endless search for what I call the “Lego Euphoria”. That feeling you got as a child after you’ve built something from scratch. It does not matter if it breaks to pieces a few minutes later, or whether or not it even has a real purpose. That moment when you realise that you’ve made something from nothing, to me that is happiness.
Whatever your reasons might be, it is important that you are completely honest with yourself about it. There is no good or bad answer. More money might be as good a motivation as any, as long as you are completely honest with yourself about why you want to take this potentially life-changing risk.
Keeping your reasons in mind, it is always wise to consider the pros and cons of starting your own business:
You’re the boss – The freedom of autonomy is surely something to strive towards. Now you can decide when it is time for a coffee break, or how many leave days you get.
You can earn more – Very few people would consider starting a business if the aim was to become poorer. Perhaps you are the next Richard Branson, and you can leave enough money for your grandchildren’s children.
Do what you love – We all know the sayings about doing work that you love. Your own business gives you the chance to do exactly that.
Add to your current income – Starting something “on the side” is one of the best ways to complement your existing income.
Be part of the community – Business owners experience a special sense of connection with the community where they operate in. It makes you a key role-player in the economics and upliftment of your community.
Meet new people – Through your journey as a business owner, you will meet a variety of new people, from new customers to like-minded people with whom you can trade business insights.
Learning and overcoming – This is a big one. Regardless of the type or size of your new venture, you will most certainly face a number of obstacles. These obstacles will force you to learn more about your trade, your business, people in general, and yourself.
Regain aim and confidence – Sometimes having a plan is enough to raise people from what is keeping them down. The idea that you are busy working towards something will give you the strength that is needed to look past your current circumstances.
Build something – If your business makes it, you will be able to look back and say “I built this”.
You’re the boss – It goes without saying that being the boss comes with its own set of challenges. It can be very stressful if you are solely responsible for your livelihood.
Start-up cost – Not all businesses require large sums of money in the beginning phase. Nevertheless, you have to consider that there are no guarantees that you will make back the money you put into starting your business.
Less security – One of the perks of being an employee is the surety that your paycheck will be paid every month on a specific day. This security can be lost if you are the one that needs to make sure there is money in the bank.
Chief of Everything – Being the boss means you need to be willing to do anything and everything. If you don’t have the resources to hire someone for specific tasks, you will have to do it yourself. You might end up doing things that you don’t like, or perhaps are not even good at.
Sacrifices – Starting your own business means long hours and hard work, especially during the start-up phase. You might end up sacrificing time spent with friends and family. Sometimes, 8 hours a day will simply not cut it.
It can be lonely – Not everyone in your life will share your passion for your business. Many may even believe that you are crazy for thinking your venture will succeed. The road to the top can become a rather lonely journey.
It is best to draw up a list of your own. Make a list of pros, the things you want from your own business, and compare that with the list of cons and risks. The rewards do not have to be more than the risks; it just has to be worth it.