Quitting your day job to embark on another career or start your own business is a huge and frightening step. If you do it, though, you want to make sure you do it right. Here are seven great tips for quitting your day job & starting own business and making a successful transition:
1. Have a plan.
Don’t just quit. Whenever people tell stories of their successful transitions into other careers, they tend to leave out all the planning that went into that transition. You don’t just up and quit your day job and immediately start a successful new career. You need to have a very specific plan of action in mind, you need to do everything possible in preparation, and if possible you should start on some of the basics for your new career before completely quitting your old. In some cases, there may be a legal conflict if you’re going from one endeavor to something else in the same field and generally it won’t be possible to make a full-time commitment to a new career while still working your regular job. However, there are certain things you can do to prepare yourself.
2. Save some money.
You probably won’t start seeing significant profits right away, so you need to be able to pay your bills in the meantime. Remember, once you’re self-employed, you’ll have to pay for your own insurance, too. Of course, many times it just isn’t possible to save up money in advance – and often the fact that you can’t do that may be part of the reason you’re looking for a switch. In that case, though, you may want to think about finding a part-time job to help tide you over until your new business starts seeing appreciable profits.
3. Get educated.
While you’re still planning and saving up money and preparing to quit your regular job, you can work on getting yourself educated about your new field of work. You might find a relevant class at a local community college or, if there are certifications that might help achieve legitimacy in your new field, you might want to look into getting the training necessary for those. You might find online classes that will help or you may just want to read books that relate to the industry. In any case, having a solid base of knowledge in your field is important and it is one thing that you can definitely develop before leaving your current job.
4. Do your research.
You need to be sure that you know what has worked and what hasn’t worked in your new field. You need to know how much each marketing venue will cost and how much each license or certificate you need will cost. You need to have your website ready to launch and, if you want to accept online payments, consider whether you need to have a merchant account set up that will accept credit cards. Have all these things researched and ready to go so that you know exactly what your costs and expected timeline will be before you quit your current job. You don’t want to quit your current job and then find out that you haven’t planned sufficiently for the expenses of your new career.
5. Make a schedule.
Once you are your own boss, it is important that you stick to a schedule. Even if you’re running an online business and don’t need to show up at a certain place at a certain time to deal with your customers, you should still adhere to a schedule. Scheduling is important so that you get a sense of how much time you are putting in to your work and what kind of profits you are realizing from that time investment.
6. Understand that it won’t be easy.
Although there are many advantages to having your own business such as the ability to set your own schedule, being your own boss, and doing something you love, running your own business is difficult. It requires a lot of planning, you won’t see success immediately, you’ll have to deal with a lot of overhead expenses, and you won’t necessarily have a stable income. You just need to be aware of these things before quitting your day job.
7. Don’t burn bridges.
When you’re quitting a job you didn’t particularly like, it can be very tempting to go out with a bang – curse out your incompetent boss or flip off upper management on the way out the door. Even if you’re going into a different field of work and are pretty sure you’re never going to see anyone from your old job again, you never know. So be prudent. There was a time when it was possible that you might not ever cross paths with someone from an old job, especially if you moved far away. Now, though, in the age of the internet bad behavior could haunt you for a long time to come.