A lot of people believe that the industry-specific experience is what can make them into a great entrepreneur. After all, if you can do business, you can run a business, right? Well, not necessarily. You see being a person in charge of an entire project is quite different than being in charge of one task necessary for its completion. Now imagine running several projects simultaneously, being directly in charge with partner/investor/customer relations and handling all of the business infrastructure and logistics by yourself. Still, starting within the same industry (regardless of the position) has its benefits and here’s how you can turn this to your favor.
1. Try to see the big picture
A tunnel vision is something that a lot of employees suffer from. As a person in a certain company, chances are that you’ll have a single task that you’ll be so focused on, that you won’t be able to see how the rest of the company is doing. Instead, try putting yourself in the shoes of your manager or employer and try to see what they’re seeing. Ask some questions and show an active interest in how they’re doing. Unless it’s a corporate secret, there’s no reason why they shouldn’t share it with you.
2. Start making connections
One of the advantages that you’ll have by working within the industry that you intend to stay in as an entrepreneur is a fact that you’ll meet a lot of experts. Your current coworkers may become team-leaders in your future company, your current clients might go with you once you become independent. Everyone you meet is an asset, which is why you might want to take this as a starting point when first meeting them. Try to make a good first impression and don’t allow them to treat you as an inferior, due to the fact that they might keep this relationship with you in the future, as well.
3. Your work-life balance will change
You might be overworked and exhausted at the moment, but this is nothing in comparison with what awaits you once you’re the person in charge. This is something that you need to be mentally prepared for. Your work-life balance will definitely change for the worse, but you just can’t allow this to go too far. Think about why you’re doing what you’re doing. Chances are that you’re trying to build a better future for yourself and the people you care about. If you and these people suffer in the process, your entire effort somehow loses its point.
4. Think about the fundraising early on
Budgeting and fundraising are the two most important tasks for every potential entrepreneur. First of all, you need to figure out how much money you need and where is your break-even point. Once you get past this, you should start thinking about options that you have to raise these funds. A lot of people do this via a business loan but if you’re merely planning to fund a startup, even low rate personal loans may be a viable solution. Other than this, you may also want to consider using your personal money to finance your business, as well as think about the option of crowdfunding. Attracting investors is always an option.
5. Start looking for your own angle
If you change several companies, you’ll start seeing patterns in ways in which they differ from one another. Once you start a business on your own, you’ll already have a list of advantages and disadvantages of these companies, which should help you adopt the first and avoid the latter. Still, this requires you to take notes and analyze them back at home. Trying to memorize and believing that you’ll intuitively develop a knack for this is not a reliable thing and it’s something that you just can’t depend on.
6. A leap of fate
A lot of entrepreneurs launch a startup while still keeping your day job. This is not a good practice for several reasons. First of all, your enterprise will suffer for your lack of time and attention. Running your own business takes an incredible amount of time and effort, which is something that you simply might not be able to muster if you see it as a part-time. Second, doing this might be seen as a conflict of interest and there are instances where you can even be legally pursued by your current employer. Therefore, at one point, you’ll just have to take a leap of fate, quit your day job and go all in.
7. Prepare for being on your own
For a lot of people, running their own business is a dream come true; unfortunately, this is a dream that has a darker side, as well, and can, therefore, easily turn into a nightmare. Too much responsibility is known to be an incredible burden, especially if it’s your first time on your own and there’s no one there telling you what to do.
As you can see, being a part of the industry will help you learn of it inside and out, which is definitely a plus. However, you need to avoid making a presumption that you have all that it takes to succeed on your own based on your previous experience. Properly prepare yourself, make baby steps and everything should be all right.