When to Make the Leap into Entrepreneurship: Tips for Leaving your Day Job : Under30CEO When to Make the Leap into Entrepreneurship: Tips for Leaving your Day Job : Under30CEO
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When to Make the Leap into Entrepreneurship: Tips for Leaving your Day Job

| May 2, 2012 | 15 Comments

So you’re tired of working 9 to 5? You’re tired of being stuck behind your desk, staring at the computer, doing absolutely the same thing, day in and day out? And you’ve come up with a brilliant solution.  You’re going to become an entrepreneur.  While the idea sounds tempting, hold your horses for a quick minute.  Leaving your day job is a massive decision and starting your own business is even more massive.  You need to be prepared for long hours, extreme stress and a bumpy ride.  If you’ve already mentally prepared for these nuances, then you’re almost ready to make that giant leap of faith.  Here are a few tips to help you make a smooth transition from a dull, boring office worker to a cool, hip and highly motivated entrepreneur.

1. Passion

The first thing that you must have is passion. With passion, everything comes easily. Find something that you are passionate about, assess business opportunities and start developing a business plan. Developing a business plan doesn’t mean you have to start your own business the next morning. Some of the best businesses in the world took ages in planning before they were launched. Now back to this passion idea. Being passionate will help you boost your emotional intelligence while minimizing stress and possibly even depression. Your passion will be your number one driving force and source of motivation. Look at Amazon.com. What started out as a passion for books turned the website into one of the largest online businesses in the world!

2. Find a Niche

Another good tip to bear in mind is to operate a business in a niche market. Sure Chinese food may be your passion, but opening a Chinese restaurant in the middle of San Francisco might not be a good idea. The competition will be fierce. Operating in a niche market means that you’ll have fewer competitors and as such, the chances of you achieving success will be higher. If you still insist on opening that Chinese restaurant, an alternative would be to open your business in an area where a Chinese restaurant would be in a niche market, like Alaska, for example. You are still able to pursue your passion while capitalizing on the advantages of operating in a niche market, all at the same time.

3. Secure Financial Security

Many people want to quit their day jobs, but before you hand in that notice to your boss, ensure that you have the financial security to do so. You’ll need to invest money to start your business.  You’ll also need to have enough money set aside to keep it up and running in the first year before consistent revenue starts rolling in. The stress of managing a new business is enough to make a person want to jump off a building at times.  Adding financial hardships into this equation aggravates the situation further. Sound financial security will help put your mind at ease, thus enabling you to be a more productive entrepreneur.

4. Emotional Intelligence

Having high emotional intelligence is also a plus when it comes to being a successful entrepreneur. People with high emotional intelligence are better able to control their emotions and stress levels, thus allowing them to fully focus on tasks at hand. They are also less likely to turn to drinking or drugs as a source of stress relief. Not only can this reflect positively on your outwards appearance, it can also increase your productivity. Having high emotional intelligence may also help you maintain your motivation longer, thereby reducing your chances of throwing in the towel after only a few short months.

There are a lot of things that must be considered before handing in your resignation letter to your boss. But fret not; with passion, financial security and emotional intelligence, you can conquer the world.

Sara Fletcher is interested in emotional intelligence, and how it relates to every aspect of our lives. She loves to explore psychology, business, and sports in relation to emotional intelligence training.

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Category: Personal Branding, Startup Advice

  • http://www.blogkori.com/ Tamal Anwar

    Some great points added. I would like to add some more on this thread. Before jumping on to the entrepreneur’s life you need a positive cashflow. Let it be a job, freelance work, side sell or anything. Just need to stay afloat. Money problems are major headache in life.

    I was fortunate that I was not held in a job because from day 1 I was on my own. But I did lots of mistakes. I did big mistake when I tried to jump to be the next apple or microsoft. Yeah the success stories make us wanna quit the cashflow and pursue the dream job but we gotta stay in the present.
    Before becoming a full time CEO of your venture, keep your job (for me it’s my freelance work) -just to pay the bills. Invest that extra money in business, let it grow until it can run on it’s own.

    Tamal
    ~former under 20 CEO
    ~present under 30 CEO

  • http://thepeachdesign.com/ Peachanan Rojwongsuriya

    I guess if you are passionate about your work, you can test the water first during your free time without quitting a job. If the traction is high, or there are signs of it then maybe start planing your quit date. :)

    I believe this is the safest route, but will require your passion to drive you through it. 

  • http://panganmarketing.com/ Josh Pangan

    Passion, planning, and commitment are definitely essential when starting a business.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003021343693 Tidianez Doucoure

    Great Post Guys , thanks

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003021343693 Tidianez Doucoure

    Great Post Guys , thanks

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003021343693 Tidianez Doucoure

    Great Post Guys , thanks

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003021343693 Tidianez Doucoure

    Great Post Guys , thanks

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003021343693 Tidianez Doucoure

    Great Post Guys , thanks

  • http://twitter.com/CoreyBlake9000 CoreyBlake9000

    Sara!  I’m sorry to say that I disagree with all of this.  There is nothing safe about becoming an entrepreneur and if you try to play it safe, expect to lose the game. Sure, maybe start part time and don’t build a business unless you’ve proven that you have people willing to pay for what you offer, but you cannot approach business intellectually. Start a business with your heart. Jump and build your wings on the way down.

  • http://getbrode.com/ Marc Brodeur

    The most important thing is to start small and test ideas. Let the business grow naturally. It’s all in #2, but greatly expanded. These tips are a bit unhelpful and ho-hum, I feel.

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  • http://twitter.com/KenyanMarketer Muthuri Kinyamu

    Great piece of advice sir..Maybe just to add a few lines to your article here’s my two cents of advice to all those willing
    to get into business and be the next generation of entrepreneurs in Kenya and
    in the world!
    http://www.muthurikinyamu.blogspot.com/2012/06/7-things-you-need-to-know-before-you.html

  • http://www.aspyresolutions.com/ Dana Leavy-Detrick

    These are good starting points tips, though I’m wary on the first one: “With passion, everything comes easily.” I think that’s setting a false stage.  Passion can lead to great ideas, and I think #2 is even more important, to find a niche market that has a need/challenge/interest to which you can put your passion to work developing smart products or services that speak to that, and ultimately create value to that target customer.  But passion alone isn’t a good enough reason, or tool, with which to start a business.  No doubt, however, you DO have to have it.

  • http://www.aspyresolutions.com/ Dana Leavy-Detrick

    These are good starting points tips, though I’m wary on the first one: “With passion, everything comes easily.” I think that’s setting a false stage.  Passion can lead to great ideas, and I think #2 is even more important, to find a niche market that has a need/challenge/interest to which you can put your passion to work developing smart products or services that speak to that, and ultimately create value to that target customer.  But passion alone isn’t a good enough reason, or tool, with which to start a business.  No doubt, however, you DO have to have it.

  • http://www.aspyresolutions.com/ Dana Leavy-Detrick

    These are good starting points tips, though I’m wary on the first one: “With passion, everything comes easily.” I think that’s setting a false stage.  Passion can lead to great ideas, and I think #2 is even more important, to find a niche market that has a need/challenge/interest to which you can put your passion to work developing smart products or services that speak to that, and ultimately create value to that target customer.  But passion alone isn’t a good enough reason, or tool, with which to start a business.  No doubt, however, you DO have to have it.