6 Steps To Becoming Your Own Boss
So, you've decided to become your own boss. Having a home business can be immensely rewarding (and profitable). That doesn't mean it will be easy. On the contrary, working for yourself means you must be an adaptable self-starter. Here are six steps you should consider when going into business for yourself.
Step 1: Research the Market
Whatever your offerings are, knowing the state of the market is critical to success. Market research should be quantitative, using accurate demographic data about your customers. It should also be qualitative, taking note of their shifting preferences and expectations. Remember to keep abreast of current business trends within your industry. Staying up to date with changes in economics, regulations, and new tools to streamline business processes can put you ahead of the game.
Step 2: Choose the Best Business Structure
Whether you remain a sole proprietor or incorporate, there are benefits and drawbacks to each potential business structure. For example, a limited liability company (LLC) grants certain tax and liability benefits that a sole proprietorship does not while carrying unique responsibilities. The legal ramifications of business structure are also significant. Visit the official IRS website to research the many structural options before considering doing business.
Step 3: Schedule Tasks Wisely
Entrepreneurs often don't have the luxury of delegating work. This might feel overwhelming at first and lead you to multitask. Resist the urge to do everything at once. Multiple psychological studies show that humans are terrible at multitasking. Instead, learn to triage your tasks. Organize work according to priority and group similar tasks together. Then, do them in sequence. Make a schedule for each day and stick to it. Being your own boss means learning how to delegate to yourself.
Step 4: Optimize Your Home Workspace
For the independent businessperson, "home" often becomes "headquarters." Make the most of this situation by maximizing the productivity of your spaces. Decluttering can massively increase your focus. Investing in ergonomically designed work furniture like desks and chairs can reduce strain on your body and streamline workflow. Even choosing the optimal color scheme for your office makes a difference. Research the options and find the best fit for your home HQ.
Step 5: Engage in Networking
Just because you have your own company doesn't mean you need to go it alone. Networking with other professionals in your field can have many benefits. Leveraging social networking sites like LinkedIn to build your personal brand is always helpful. It's also worth attending networking events, whether they're virtual or in-person. Your town's local chamber of commerce typically acts as a clearinghouse for networking opportunities and classes to build your skill set. Get involved in your local business community and create the connections you need.
Step 6: Prioritize Your Wellbeing
Last, but not least, remember to prioritize self-care. Becoming an entrepreneur means taking on extra stress and concern. Your physical health will affect your mental health (and productivity). The reverse is also true. Certain foods are well-regarded by managers for their positive impacts on cognition. Complex carbohydrates, protein-rich foods like lean meats, and green leafy vegetables are typically lauded for their health benefits. Also, be sure to stay hydrated. Being dehydrated by even a few percent can cause negative effects on the body and brain.
One more thing to remember: Never change your diet or exercise plan without consulting a physician. What works for one person might be bad news for another. Knowing yourself is the first step to becoming a more effective entrepreneur.
If you decide to take the plunge and start your own business, remember that the big picture and the details matter equally. These tips are only a starting point on your journey to becoming a successful entrepreneur.