How to survive the initial storm when starting your own business.
Perhaps the biggest initial stress for most when starting a business is finance. Suddenly you’re responsible for your own finances, no longer relying on a monthly salary from an employer. This can be very daunting to many, and often takes a while to adjust to. Furthermore, when operating your own business, you will likely be responsible for the livelihoods of others. This alone can be very stressful and will alter how you look at your business and the decisions you will have to make.
Understanding this, we have put together the following tips. These tips are designed to help you better survive during the initial, scary stage of your business – not only helping you to reduce stress but also avoid some common pitfalls and give your business the best chance of succeeding.
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Get a routine
When working for yourself it’s easy to become distracted. Suddenly finding yourself with lots of time on your hands will, of course, feel great at first. However, enjoy it too much and you may find yourself forgetting that this free time is actually when you are supposed to be working. Another common problem is the opposite – that of you working too much and becoming burnt out. Both are just as fatal to new businesses and therefore should be avoided at all costs. The trick is striking a balance between the two.
If you are working at home, set aside an area in which you can sit down and work for a set period of time without distraction. Doing this every day will give your day structure and enable you to find a balance between when you should be working and when you should be relaxing. Knowing when to switch between the two is important and will help you more easily distinguish between the two. Of course, working for yourself will mean you can be flexible in setting such working periods, and this is a huge benefit to most. However, it should never be forgotten that you are now the boss and therefore you will only get out of your business what you put into it.
Be careful with your finances
When starting out on your own, there will, of course, be various expenses. Whilst it’s understandable to want the best for your business at first, you must be cautious and keep an eye on your spending. This is recommended even if you find yourself doing well straight away. This is because business conditions can often change quickly and without warning. By being careful with your spending and keeping a certain level of money saved, you will be able to much better survive such events should they happen. Such periods of high and low business are common for new businesses. How such periods are endured is often the difference between successful and unsuccessful businesses. Keeping emergency funds for such events also provides important peace-of-mind to you and any employees you may have.
Don’t do it alone
When working for yourself, it’s easy to become slightly disconnected from the rest of the world. Modern business practices and technology now means that more and more people are working from home – needing nothing more than a laptop and smartphone. Many new recruitment agency owners will find themselves in this position – often working exclusively either on their phone or the internet, and rarely meeting clients face-to-face. Whilst this is understandable, new business owners are still recommended to get out into the real world and meet others. This can take many forms, from making the effort to visit a client’s premises, to attending a local event. Such interactions not only help you to improve your social skills but often lead to new relationships being formed and business opportunities created.
Ironically, such groups of like-minded individuals are often most easily found online – of course, you will then hopefully meet in real! These groups can often be great sources of industry information and help you to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and issues. Remember, there are many people just like you who are either starting out on their own or now running successful businesses. You can learn lots from both, as they can learn from you, and so by sharing information, you will be giving yourself a greater chance of succeeding.
Don’t keep still
You may have a full book of clients and working to your capacity, if you are, congratulations! When everything is going great, it is understandable to think less or even at all about what could go wrong. However, as you will likely learn, business is unpredictable; one minute a client loves you and the next they are gone. It is therefore very important to ensure that you continue to market your business and keep your eyes out for new opportunities all the time. This helps you not only be better prepared for any slowdowns in business but will also likely present opportunities for you to expand your business should you want to.
As you can see, there are a lot of things you will need to remember when first starting out on your own. From watching what you spend to speaking to business owners, there are a number of things you can do that will help you better handle the numerous obstacles you are likely to face when creating your own employment agency. Make use of all the resources available to you and do not be afraid to ask for help when you need it. We hope you have found the above tips useful. Remember, every successful business first began with an idea and a risk being taken.