Many people you see today running their own successful business actually started it on a very small scale whilst working their full time jobs at the same time.
Starting a business whilst working offers a great way to “test the waters” of your business idea and to make sure it can support you financially before you go ahead and do it full time.
It also means you can test your business ideas, tweak your plan and make mistakes without the financial worry that would come with running your business full time.
So many people want to be their own boss. Is it time you set up a business on the side and gave it a go?
Here are our top tips for starting up a side business:
You have to really want it
Working 9-5 (plus a commute), looking after family, seeing friends, walking the dog all takes time. If you then decide to add working 2-3 hours each evening on your business if you are not careful you could find yourself on the road to a burnout.
If you are really determined to start a business then you will make it work!
Our tip is to write down how you spend a typical day by writing down each activity and the time spent doing each. You can then identify activities that you could perhaps do less of (e.g watching television) and free up some valuable time to spend on your business.
Test the waters
Before jumping in and setting up your business make sure you have done loads of testing including product and market testing to ensure that the business is viable. The last thing you want is to spend hundreds of hours away from your friends and families working on a business that is doomed from the start.
One of the top reasons for business failure is that there is no demand for it in the first place. So make sure you have done some extensive market research – from questionnaires, online research and chatting to friends, family and strangers.
Once the business is up and going make sure you set realistic goals. You need goals to help focus the mind – hen you are tired from a long day at work if you have no goals it can be very easy to spend the evening relaxing on the sofa.
By setting goals (and a worthy reward) you will focus your mind and be determined to grow and make your side business work.
At the start this might be a daily to-do list which you work your way through.
In order to realistically grow your side business to the point where you can work on it full time you will need to outsource as much as you can.
Without outsourcing it will be very difficult to build a business large enough that you can quite your full time job.
Think about tasks that are repetitive or are not a great use of your time and consider outsourcing these.
Also what business tasks do you do that isn’t your specialism? This could be bookkeeping, web design, online marketing – you may want to consider hiring a freelancer to complete these daily tasks for you.
Finding freelancers is easy with popular websites such as Elance and Fiverr.
In today’s world it has never been easier to start your own business, you can do everything online and hire people to work for you that you have never even met before.
Starting small whilst working full time means you can grow your business slowly, organically and gives you time to really get the product right before scaling it up.
If you have always liked the idea of running your own business – go for it!