Being your Own Boss
Working for yourself a.k.a. being your own boss is something that is much more likely to be successful today than at any other time. The Internet has opened up infinite possibilities across industries, because you are now, at the very least, find-able. Some work, such as content writing, website creation, and accounting, can be accomplished entirely online, and that has obvious advantages. However, there are still logistics behind it in order to effectively start working for yourself.
Test the waters
Ideally, you should do this before deciding to strike out on your own. You can easily check if your skills are in demand by checking out job boards and freelance sites. You may be able to make the transition to self-employment doing what you did at your “real” job. If this is a case, it is simply shifting your focus from one client (your employer) to many. However, you may have to change your focus to accommodate the demand. For example, if you were a data encoder at your old job, you may have to expand your work skills to include transcription so that you can accept more projects. If you need to get additional training, do it. You can even start off taking on one or two projects on the side just to see what it is like.
The best way to start your own business is making use of available space. It could in your home, your parents’ garage, or at a friend’s spare room, unless you are planning to go into retail. In any case, you need to establish a work area. You need to have a place to put your files and equipment, and where you can get into work “mode.” This will keep you disciplined and focused as you no longer have the structure of a regular office to keep you in line.
Establish your identity
You need to get paperwork done to establish your business legally. This includes getting a business name, choosing your legal framework, and registering your business. Most people start as a single proprietorship because that is the easiest. However, note that in a single proprietorship, you are personally liable for anything that may happen at your business. You may want to consider an S-corporation or a limited liability company. It will depend on the nature of your business.
Put systems in place
Just like any regular office, you need to document everything, especially financial matters. This way, you know if you are making money. Fortunately, you can buy software that will do everything for you except make your coffee. It will track your inventory, create a client database, track your accounts receivables and payables, create invoices, send invoices, and even calculate your taxes. Of course, you still have to input the data on a regular basis. Consult with an accountant to make sure that you are doing it right.
Make your presence felt
Establish your presence online so people know you are there. You could join a freelance site or place an ad on job boards. You should also join forums and social networks as well as put up your own website, and then start marketing like mad. Remember that it takes time for you to make an impact, so you should actually start doing this before you quit your day job.
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