Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Why a New Entrepreneur Should Keep Their Day Job

When many people start their business, they believe that it will be a road paved with gold. Not so. How you navigate the ups and downs of your new business will determine how successful you will be. 

A young entrepreneur  (we'll call her Tammy) called me, let out a loud sigh and says, "I've come to the realization that I need to take a job while I'm building my business." The tone of her voice sounded like she had just struck out in the game of business. After all, one of the most despised words to an entrepreneur is job.

Our phone call continued for several minutes, and our conversation focused on why taking a job could be the best thing for her business in the long run.

Here are 3 benefits of growing your business while working full time:

1. Predictable structure and expectations

It takes an immense amount of discipline to stay focused and structured when you are your own boss! If  no one holds you accountable for deadlines and results, your business is destined to fail. Entrepreneurs who are working a job while building their business view their job from a different perspective. Imagine the valuable tools you could use if you worked on an iPhone launch, concert promotion, or any other useful marketing task, and how it would help you in your business.

2. Build Relationships

Many entrepreneurs believe in the Field of Dreams approach to marketing their business..."If you build it, they will come." Cool movie, horrible marketing strategy. The relationships you build while working at a job may turn into your dream clients or potential team members down the road. Someone who understands this strategy better than most is one of my coaching clients, Dave "Coach K" Kinneberg. He is a full time high school teacher and a part time Realtor at Coldwell Banker At Your Service Realty in Rochester, MN. He has a passion for teaching, and his high school students and their parents often come to him when they need to buy or sell a home. His part time real estate income usually exceeds his teaching income for the year by April. Don't ignore the relationships that may be in front of you!

3. Insulation from the ups and downs of revenue

Revenue is awesome for a business, but cash flow is the key to keeping an entrepreneur sane. Chris Guillebeau, author of the $100 Startup, offers great advice in his article on Starting a Business While Working a Full-Time Job. Multiple sources of income can be a great sanity saver while you are pouring your heart and soul into building your dream business.
Bottom line: If you need to seek outside employment for a short time while building your business, check your ego at the door and get the most out of it!

What are some of the most memorable experiences you had from starting your business?

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