Ready To Leap From Employee To Entrepreneur? 4 Things You Should Know

These days more millennials are ditching the traditional corporate route to embark on the journey of entrepreneurship. Thinking about taking that leap?

Photo: Alexandra Morton, founder of SmashDigital.co; Source: Courtesy Photo
Photo: Alexandra Morton, founder of SmashDigital.co; Source: Courtesy Photo

These days more millennials are ditching the traditional corporate route to embark on the journey of entrepreneurship. Thinking about taking that leap? Keep these tips in mind.

 

  1. Have patience.

    When it comes to the startup process, everyone thinks: “I want success now! I want it now!” But the truth is, far more new entrepreneurs fail than succeed. According to the Kauffman Index, ninety percent of startups fail. 137,000 startups are created globally everyday, and only 13,700 of them will succeed. As an entrepreneur you cannot be afraid of those statistics.

    The more you embrace these common startup realities it will become easier for you to make decisions that help you pivot, fail quickly and try again. If you have the tenacity to build your dream; balancing a daily dose of potential outcomes can help you make smart choices (which is one of the reasons why transitioning from a full-time job is such a huge challenge for aspiring entrepreneurs).

  2. Your vision may not match your reality.

    One of my Kauffman Fasttrac students said to me one day, “I want my success to be like all the articles I read in Inc. and Forbes. Why haven’t I gotten there yet?” Honestly, I couldn’t tell her why. I’ve come to realize that everyone’s journey is different.

    How one person defines success is different from another. The best thing I could do was encourage her to cross reference her personal goals with her business objectives to see if they were in sync. On the road of entrepreneurship you cannot compare yourself to other people. You have to do the best you can with what you have. Don’t let assumptions, and sensationalized headlines distract you from your entrepreneurial path.

  3. Plan transitional steps before you leap.

    The reason why most people stay in a full-time job and decide not to pursue entrepreneurship is due to a perceived lack of security. As an employee you’ve likely become accustomed to receiving a check every two weeks along with benefits.

    If you start planning how you will replace your monthly income this can make your transition easier. Create a personal cashflow statement to see where your money is going. If you budget well and calculate the money you need you can plan your corporate exit so you’re not stuck.

  4. Your new boss is your client.

    This may sound counterintuitive since starting your own business is synonymous with becoming “boss free.” Yet, when you are your own boss, you answer to many new bosses (a.k.a. your clients). Without clients or customers you would have no business.

    Take the time to study your customers and anticipate their needs. Communicate clearly so they know how to interact with you and what to expect. Clearly articulate payment arrangements. If you don’t like dealing with people hire someone to help you manage those personal client interactions. Remember, you succeed by helping your clients succeed.

This article has been edited and condensed.

Alexandra Morton is an award-winning entrepreneur and the founder of SmashDigital.co, a Washington, D.C. based creative services agency that helps entrepreneurs with branding and digital marketing strategies. Connect with @amortonNPO on Twitter.

 

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