If you listened to your closest confidantes (you know, the ones that care for your best interests!) when you told them you were thinking about starting a business, their advice would probably be ‘have you thought about the risks?’, ‘what if it is doesn’t work?’, ‘surely leaving a well paid job isn’t worth the risk?’
The reality is it is much much tougher than that, the decisions you have to make, the conversations you have to have, the risks you have to take are far bigger than any of your confidantes thought!
You realise that you are much more resourceful than you ever knew, you develop skills you never thought you were capable of developing.
And then there is stress, the stress of trying to pay for your overheads, the stress of trying to get more business, the stress of employing and dealing with staff, the stress of dealing with the bank manager, the accountant, clients, suppliers, landlords etc etc.
BUT, personally, I wouldn’t have it any other way . . . yes it is scary, but scarily exciting, yes it can be stressful (but you learn to manage that), it is incredibly rewarding - both personally and financially. The main thing for me is fulfilment, the sense and feeling of worth, being successful. As Steve Jobs once said . . . “You know you are on the right track when sleep becomes an inconvenience”.
The ‘tools’ you put in your toolbox are immense, you develop an incredible ability to sell, communicate (in lots of mediums!), understand marketing and finance, develop leadership skills, people skills, an ability to network, negotiating skills, public speaking skills, presentation skills and a deep understanding of ‘emotional intelligence’.
Having run several businesses - some successful and others definitely not! I’ve also helped start lots of businesses for other people - again some successful and some not. The experiences gained from all of this ‘exposure’ have been incredibly rewarding, inspiring and educational.
Even somebody with an ‘average’ education like me (no university degree here!) can have a business life (good and bad) - the alternative, work for someone who perhaps doesn’t inspire you, share your values, controls you, your mind and your level of income!
The moral of this post: surround yourself with positive, can do people, don’t listen to doubters - negative ‘draining’ people who sap all your energy - try new things and start a business!!