Have you ever felt compelled to ask a successful entrepreneur if you should quit your job to start your business?
You will hear all sorts of answers
Several years ago, I went to a start-up event where an attendee asked the guest speaker if he should quit his job to be full-time in his business. The successful entrepreneur did not urge people to quit their jobs, but gave a few reasons why it could be good to do it in order to ship their services or products faster. Another reason for leaving a job was that being in a survival mode would also help people focus on getting things done.
However, I hear more stories about entrepreneurs who waited several months to a year before moving away from their corporate job.
The reality is that complete strangers, even successful ones, do not know your story and will probably not be there to answer the future questions you will have once you make the leap.
The risks related to leaving a job are different in your twenties than in your forties. Having a family to take care of or having health concerns also brings other constraints.
Nobody knows the good or bad impacts that leaving your work will have on your life, and you don’t want to blame anybody else for what would be, in the end, your own decision.
Are you clear about your first step?
Here are some questions to consider before making a decision:
- Are you clear on what your business is?
- How long could you live on your savings if you don’t have any other income?
- What would be the worse thing that could happen if you don’t have any income for a year?
- How much would you need financially to start your business?
- Do you have time to work on your business without leaving your job?
- Do you have any constraints in your life that also require your time or money?
- If you leave your job, will you know how to use the additional free time to work on your business?
- Do you have a plan regarding what needs to be done to get started?
- Is your current work stopping you from starting on your business? If the answer is yes, how?
What are the first steps you plan to do to build your business? You might not need to leave your job right away.
Creating a new business requires consistent work and a plan, whether you still have a job or not.
If you don’t feel comfortable yet to leave your current work, it is all right. Make decisions from a clear and peaceful mind rather than feeling pressured by someone else or because you are having a bad day with your work.
Once you are on your own journey, you want to make sure that you are not struggling too much with the finance part as that can also distract you from working on your business.
Until you are clear about when it is time to leave your work, think about what you need to do on your business and start working on it.
What you could do is to set a time (perhaps 6 months from now) or a condition (once I have x numbers of paid customers or once I have enough savings that could last me a year) that will be the trigger for resigning from your job.
Let’s replace the question “Should I quit my job?” with “What do I need to do to get started?”. What would your answer be? Asking this question to people you are reaching out to might also end up with more valuable insight than using the original question.