In today’s digital economy, the tools to start a business have never been more accessible. And lately, more businesses are popping up than ever before. According to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, nearly 14% of North Americans were involved in starting or running businesses in 2014. Compared to the 7.6% seen in 2010, more and more people are taking the leap into business ownership. And the number of individuals who would like to start their own business is even higher.
A recent Harris Poll survey found that 45% of adults aged 35 years and older want to take the leap. And younger people are even more bent toward business ownership. The poll shows that 67% of Millennials between the ages of 18 and 34 would like to venture out on their own. But, taking the jump into self-employment is a major step, so how do you know when it’s time to venture out into the unknown and become your own boss? Let’s see if you fit into any of the categories. Here are five signs you’re ready to start your own business.
There is no room for advancement in your career.
Regardless of how loyal a company has been to you, sooner or later you need to make the decision whether or not you can continue to grow. Employee development is not just a way for companies to groom their workers into the future of their businesses, it’s also a way for employees to ensure they don’t become stagnant at work and can continue to advance within their career. In fact, in a study by the Society for Human Resource Management, 82% of participants stated that career advancement opportunities are important to overall job satisfaction. However, sooner or later some people reach a point where there is no longer room to grow within their position. If there is no longer anywhere for you to go at your company, it may be time to move on. From marketers to accountants to IT professionals, there is always a need for consultants and freelancers, which can be a great way to build your brand.
You no longer feel challenged at work.
One of the most fulfilling aspects of a job is to take a complicated assignment and see it through. To some, problem solving and creative thinking make the day-in, day-out flow of office work enjoyable. But when you reach a point in your career where you no longer feel challenged, it may be time to be challenged in a new venture. According to a survey by Virgin Pulse, the Virgin Group’s employee-wellness software program, 53% of participants cited “interesting and challenging work” as critical for loving the company they work for. If the passion you once had for your job has subsided, then it may be the perfect time to ignite a new passion through other business ownership.
You want to turn your hobbies into a profession.
One common mistake entrepreneurs make when they decide to venture out is they quit their day job. Though this works for some, starting a side business can be less taxing in the beginning stages and can actually give your new company the foundation it needs to succeed. Taking away the unneeded stress of worrying how you’ll pay rent can do wonders for your focus. In fact, according to Harris Poll, 55% of employed adults would quit their traditional jobs to become self-employed if they knew they would still be able to pay their bills. Work on your business during the evenings and weekends and focus your time and energy on getting your project up and running. Once it’s lucrative, take the leap into full-time self-employment. However, be sure to keep your side gig on the side and not use work hours for personal ventures. Be a good steward of your company’s time and resources, because one day, you’ll have your own employees of whom you will ask the same.
The 8-to-5 work day isn’t flexible enough for you.
One attractive aspect of business ownership is the ability in many cases to choose your own hours. And depending on the type of business you start, you can choose your own location. WiFi is prevalent in most parts of the U.S. and Canada, so you can take your company wherever you go—or not go. People work from home for many reasons, including to be closer to children, save money on commuting, and to cut costs of brick and mortar. Regardless of the reason, start-ups can be a great way to turn a rigid schedule on its side and embrace a new, flexible career path. Those who would like to venture on their own through a franchise or store front still enjoy a more flexible lifestyle but may need to get the businesses up and running before breaking from the normal work week.
You believe you can do things better/faster/bigger on your own.
There is nothing more frustrating to a hardworking professional than when projects get held up by a boss, senior leadership, or workplace policies. Sometimes the process of getting work signed off on simply slows the process without much improvement. That may be one reason why some believe they could do better. In a study by the University of Phoenix, 76% of respondents say they could pinpoint specific ways they could run things better. If you have this mentality, starting out on your own may be a way to prove that to yourself. Sometimes smaller businesses run more efficiently due to less people in the process.
Whether you want to turn a hobby into a profession, are leaning toward freelancing, or considering franchise ownership, entrepreneurship is a great way to not only satisfy a sense of adventure, but also to start a legacy that can greatly benefit your community. Sometimes it only takes an idea to start an empire. You just need the right motivation.
Are you considering starting your own business? What factors pushed you into the direction of self-employment? Let us know in the comments section below!