I never knew the opportunities that awaited me until I started my own business and for me the best opportunities were not necessarily monetary. I do want to start first with this disclaimer: Working for other people is not bad, so don’t get me wrong, and there are many leadership positions in companies that are vital to their success simply because the company can’t do it all themselves in most cases.
Here are my Top 5 Reasons to Start Your Own Business.
1. Manage or Be Managed. Ask yourself the following: Do you want to work for someone else for the rest of your life? For me this question resonated greatly because no matter what level you get to, you will always be working for someone else. Unless of course it’s your own business, however, even CEO’s of companies still work for their shareholders and investors. So how do you not work for someone else? Start your own business and maintain ownership of it. Giving away too much equity in your business at the start can lead to loss of control and outside influence on the direction of your company. Make sure you get investors that embrace your vision. I originally went to college to study Landscape Architecture in hopes of taking over my dad’s company, The Site Development Studios, because naturally I was good at my job there and well interested. But after I was in college at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, for a couple semesters I decided I wanted to start something of my own.
2. Unlimited Creativity. By being at the top level you are able to focus more on creating a future and guiding your company where it needs to go through strategic planning. Here, an Entrepreneur flourishes. We envision our ideas and gather the necessary resources to bring the vision to life. Remember that everything we have as a manmade material was the result of some individual thoughts and actions. Some examples would be the chair you sit in, the electricity in your home or the phone in your hand.
3. Increase in Knowledge. In order to start your own business you need to figure most things out on our own or hire people that are far more knowledgeable in certain areas. IT for instance would be my weak point, even though I took some courses on it in college. However, being able to find the information you need is valuable. By taking the time to do your own research on developing your own product or creating the business you want to, you increase your knowledge of the working world, other businesses and other entrepreneurs along the way. This helps you mold your business into your own and opens avenues to explore later on as you continue to grow and expand your business. I call this the Age of Discovery.
4. Tax Breaks and Write offs. Enough said.
5. The Challenge. My favorite reason. When starting your business there is a lot to do. Developing your idea or product, gathering resources such as investments and people amongst many other things. It’s all about thinking smarter vs. working harder. Don’t mistake this phrase. There will still be lots of hard work ahead or everyone would start their own business. One thing I have learned along the way however is do the hard stuff today or at least first. Seth Godin put it well saying that “You don’t need all your ducks in a row, you just need one.” It is easy to talk about your ideas or dreams, and spend countless amounts of time lining everything up to be perfect, however business changes and so do your ideas. Start somewhere and allow your ideas to grow organically. Remember there will be days you want to quit or pull your hair out or cry as well as late nights, however the feeling of overcoming this challenge is immense. Remember that just like a dollar earned today is worth more than a dollar you earn tomorrow because you can invest it, your investment in the doing the hard stuff today will have exponential returns in the future.