It’s one of the common debates that every individual that decides to start a business has to answer. Do you just quit your ‘9-5’ position, if you’re lucky enough to have one, and take your chances that your new endeavor will take off? Or do you give yourself that cushion of having something stable to pay the bills and work in the evenings and down times, possibly living off 5-hour energy drinks and sugar, to make a go of it? You’ll find plenty of advice from experts on what the best way of approaching it is and a plethora of opinion, whether you want it or not, from just about anyone you talk to.
I’ve been going back and forth about it myself. I work a day job with a non-profit and take on the mantle of business owner once my time there is done and my evenings free up a bit. The reasons I decided this was the route for me at this juncture? I ended up reading and asking around, thinking on my priorities and asked myself 4 questions:
- Do I have the ready-to- go clients to justify walking into the great unknown? This was one of the biggest questions. There’s no question I have enough to do that would keep me as busy as my full-time position every single day. The issue I needed to work out was whether it was enough at this moment to justify making the transition from part-time to full-time, and would more be likely to follow pretty quickly to keep the momentum up.
- Will I feel that my family will have the stability they need? For some folks this is the hardest question to really objectively look at. Sometimes you get so excited about the prospect of a new journey, you forget to look at the people you’ll be taking along for the ride. Which is, of course, not a fair course of action. Like a lot of people I have a mortgage, a family, and bills. All the excitement of running a business would be lost if the roof that covers my daughter’s head disappears.
- Why? Also a hard question to be objective about, but motivation becomes a key to whether this is something you really want to do. Ask yourself why you’re taking this road. Are you just unhappy with where you’re at currently, and if so would a new position achieve the same results? Or are there deeper motivations in motion? When you find that answer keep it in the forefront of your mind, because that’s what’s going to make it worth it in the end.
- How far do I want to take this? What is the end goal? If you have the chance to take this all the way, is that where you want it to go? Or are you looking to keep it small and tight?
Asking myself those 4 questions has really helped me decide on the road I’m taking with this, and they will help me decide if I should ever change it. What other questions would you suggest for others to ask themselves?