I recently received a message from a long-time friend who launched a part-time business several years ago and is now considering making the transition to full-time entrepreneurship.
She contacted me because she wanted to speak with “someone who gets it.” Because inevitably, many people who have not embarked upon becoming a small business owner — won’t … they “won’t get it.”
Given that she knows I am a tad bit obsessed with perfecting early-stage startups — she knew that I would absolutely “get it.”
While she, and others, may have expected me to share my rendition of The Glamorous Life: Entrepreneurship Uncensored — international trips, celebrity connections, an all-star cast of fellow industry movers and shakers, living life on your own terms, and more — these are not the first things that came to mind. Nor are they an immediate reality for most startups.
Before you Quit your Job to Start a Business
Rather, I decided to take a trip down memory lane to when I launched my first successful and profitable business — and the wildly amazing journey thereafter to serial entrepreneurship.
This is what I told her — and what I recommend that you consider before you quit your job and start a new business.
1. Bank your paychecks.
I know. Not so glamorous. But it’s entirely necessary.
If you are cognizant of the fact that most small businesses fail early due to a lack of cash flow — this is the first area that you should do your best to address. Start by creating a new savings account — and bank every other check you receive. Developing financial discipline personally will help you navigate and successfully manage cash flow in the future.
2. Cut personal expenses in half.
My first two recommendations ultimately deal with money, because cash flow is the life line of your business. If you’ve worked your way up the corporate ladder then you’re undoubtedly used to having most of what your heart desires. But if you’re going to be successful in business you’ll have to curb your guilty spending pleasures.
If you’ve never operated on a budget — now is a good time to start. Develop a personal budget and list your income and every single expense. Then cut your expenses in half. Your “future self” will thank you for it.
But most importantly, you will develop two traits that you desperately need in business — discipline and delayed gratification.