How to Quit Your Job and Start a Successful Business
When people think about what is stopping them from becoming an entrepreneur, fear of failure is one of the major ones. Many people fear taking the leap and quitting their jobs to work for themselves because they are afraid of not being successful. Actually, starting a successful business won’t be difficult if you prepare in advance. This guide will tell you how.
Think About What You Want From Life
Do you really want to quit your job? What do you believe in? Do you want more time for your family? More time for yourself? Or have you found a project that needs time outside of business hours? If you know why you’re quitting your job, you’ll know how much money you need to get by while pursuing your dream. When you know how much you need per month (or per year), it’ll be easier to determine how long it will take for your side hustle to bring in that amount of money. Doing this will keep you focused and remind you that, even if you don’t succeed, there’s no reason to get discouraged.
Don’t Just Quit; Plan It Out
Although it’s possible to leave your job at any time, this course of action can set you up for failure. This time, don’t be unprepared and know beforehand what your backup plan is. Make sure you also have something lined up before you leave. Remember, don’t quit your day job if you don’t have another source of income! The above is not intended to indicate that desk jobs should continue to be people’s 9-to-5 schedule.
To keep you going and show people that you have the wherewithal to succeed, create a prototype before you give up your day job. With proof that you can actually do what you say, it will be easier for people to invest in your idea.
A side hustle is something you can easily do in your spare time, but make sure it’s something you’re good at before doing it. For example, it might mean working on it after work, or doing freelance writing or consulting on slow days. Otherwise, you may end up burnt out and less productive than if you had just quit your full-time job.
Don’t Leave Without A Safety Net
Quitting your job can be an incredibly risky thing, especially if you’re not financially stable enough. I’m not telling you that you shouldn’t take risks—of course you should!—but when it comes to quitting your job to start a business, don’t quit before making sure your risk is worth it. Once things are looking good for your new business venture, feel free to let go of that comfort net. But until then, keep your day job. If possible, build up some savings so you have a few months of living expenses saved up just in case things don’t work out as planned.
I know, I know—we’re supposed to be entrepreneurs here. And real-life entrepreneurs know no bounds when it comes to taking risks and experimenting with new business ventures. But before you jump in, make sure you have enough cash on hand for six months of living expenses. That way, if your new business idea doesn’t turn out like you planned, you can always go back to your day job without worrying about how you’ll pay rent.
Set a Deadline and Then Stick To It
There are two common ways of quitting your job: Set an explicit date when you’ll hand in your resignation, or set a predetermined amount of time—six months, for example—when you’ll work on launching your business. If you know exactly when you’re leaving, there’s no temptation to procrastinate with everyday tasks.
You should also clearly communicate your resignation date to everyone involved—not just your boss, but your colleagues, employees, clients, and anyone else who will be affected by your departure. This is particularly important if you work in a highly collaborative environment where everyone depends on each other’s help. Set an explicit handover plan with an estimated timeframe so they know exactly when they can reach out to you with questions or problems.
Tell your boss you’re leaving, tell your colleagues, tell everyone you can that it’s time for you to go out on your own. While it might seem scary at first, most people will support you. The more people who know about your plans, the easier it will be for other entrepreneurs to put in a good word for you when you get ready to launch your business.
Of course, you’ll also need to be honest with yourself. If you’re staying in your job because of financial obligations, it may not be possible for you to start your own business immediately.
If you plan on taking time off before launching your business, that’s also fine. It can take several months (or even years) of planning and hard work before you’re ready to start your own company. However, once you’ve made up your mind, don’t look back! You need to stay focused if you want your new business venture to succeed.
Finally, be sure you’re confident in your decision. If you tell everyone about your plans but still haven’t decided whether or not to go out on your own, you could end up damaging your reputation. People will expect you to follow through on what you say—and they’ll judge if you don’t. Tell people once, and then stay true to your word!
Look Into Alternative Sources Of Income
Side hustles are an increasingly popular way for people to make money on their own terms. According to a 2017 report from Merrill Lynch, 42% of small business owners have considered starting an additional side hustle, while 40% of side-hustlers earn at least half of their income from these projects. If you’re thinking about making more money in your free time, consider starting your own business instead—it will pay off hugely later on. Not sure where to start? Check out our guide on how to create a profitable niche business.
If you’re not interested in starting your own business, that’s fine too—there are still plenty of ways to make money from home. The benefit of working for yourself is you can determine exactly how much time you want to spend on your income project. You can also choose how much money you want to make—side hustles usually bring in less than full-time jobs, but there’s no limit!