If your reinvention plan includes an entrepreneurial venture, don’t give up your day job too soon. The paycheck that automatically appears each month for your current job will disappear, and within minutes you could be on less even financial footing. No one can predict new business cash flow with 100% certainty, and you have to be ready for the inevitable ebbs and flows.
This point was made very well in a Brazen Life blog post on www.brazencareerist.com. In this article, “4 Ways to Use Your Day Job to Move Toward Your Dream Job”, Tanea Smith gives soon-to-be entrepreneurs get a handful of wise “must dos” before they fly from their financial security nest.
Check out the full article, but in the meantime, zero in on these key points:
- Set aside a specific amount of your paycheck for your business venture, and remind yourself not to resent your 9-to-5—it’s helping you move toward that big reinvention goal.
- Take a candid assessment of your financial picture–your credit score, your savings, your debt—and don’t bring a poor financial standing into a new business.
- Seek out mentors and others at your current job who can teach you specific skills you’ll need in your new business.
- Don’t waste any time. Use commuting, lunch, evenings and weekend time to keep your business plans moving. As a serial entrepreneur I know that each of these four suggestions are necessary and true. And I would add a fifth, which I believe makes or breaks a business venture:
- Determine if you will be able to invest not only time, but money into your new venture.
We all hear stories of billionaires who started their businesses on a shoestring (like Sara Blakeley, the 40-something woman who started Spanx with only $5,000), but my observation and experience is that you have to spend money to make money. All the good ideas in the world don’t go very far unless you have the money to promote, advertise and sell. Start-ups that have very limited financial resources often limp along or grow at a very slow pace.
Though #1 on the Brazen Life list advises you to set aside money from your current paycheck, I see that as money to live on before your business generates a continual income stream. Money you need to live on is not the money that you’ll invest in your business. While you still have the paycheck from your day job, research where you will find the money to invest in your business—personal savings, home equity lines of credit, friends, family, small business loans, angel investors and the like. Investment money in any form is the rocket fuel that will make your new business soar. —KAS
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