People ask me quite often about running my own company. Some people think it’s glamorous (it’s not really!) and some people think it’s just a hobby (I wish it was!) There are pros and cons to running your own business, as there is with everything in life. If you’re a “grass is greener” kind of person, you might look longingly at it as the golden goose… A way to have all this free time and a way to rid yourself of any current work issues, but you need to look beyond that.
Doing What You Love?
First up, let’s go for a positive… It’s a great way to do something you really enjoy. Whether that’s being creative or working with animals… You can be sure that you won’t have the dreaded Sunday night blues again. However, no company runs on one discipline alone. There’s always admin, promotion, networking and the finance side to suck up, at least initially. Don’t under estimate the time spent on the things you don’t enjoy, like chasing overdue invoices!
The Flexibility Factor
The flexibility is both a blessing and a curse. Great when there’s school plays, appointments or the sun makes an appearance. Not so great when you have to sit up until midnight 2 nights on the trot to catch up because of a sick day.
If you’re not working, chances are you’re not earning! Those holiday’s have to be thought out well in advance. You might even need to take your laptop with you and sneak off for a few hours each day, just to keep things ticking over… How relaxing!
Calling The Shots
There is no doubt about it that having the ultimate last say in what you do and don’t do is very satisfying, but the unsettled feeling of losing clients and the risk of the apple cart being upset on a month by month basis always bubbles away.
But I can Make More!
When it comes to freelancing and consulting, a lot of people see the hourly rate and compare it to their current salary… I know I did! But remember that, it’s not a paid lunch or paid holidays, so be accurate in your calculation before you run away with pound signs in your eyes. Also be realistic about capacity expectations… What is the minimum number of hours you need to work to cover expenses.
Would I Do It All Over Again?
Absolutely! I think I’m just so institutionalised to being “employed” that at just over a year in, I still haven’t perfected the ability to switch on and off quickly. I’m used to a commute wind up and down… Downtime without a care in the World and the guaranteed income. But it continues to be the best thing that has ever been thrown my way, in more ways than one. I just need to let go a little of the concern and relax into the new vibe.