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Thanks for sharing. It would help to know more about your background and the type of business you want to go into.
The country has been through recessions in the past and hopefully the economy will get better.
Have you developed a Business and Marketing Plan on the new business??
Well, I'm working in the funeral industry now, so it's pretty much job security. I started my business 3 years ago selling Halloween related items and have seen positive gains each year. This year was going to be the year I left the funeral biz to focus on my biz full time.
You started your business 3 years ago selling Halloween related items. Sounds like a great business.
Do you have a Business and Marketing Plan??
Are you now going to focus on your biz full time??
Yes, I want to focus on it full time. And no, I am ashamed to admit, I do not have a Business Plan. I don't know how to make one.
Just a word of caution. Please make sure that you do have savings to survive a recession before you quit your job. Just in case you do not have enough savings, try to have a different PERSPECTIVE about your day job.
Write down all the things you LIKE about your day job. And keep adding to it
Next write down all the things you DONT like about your day job and figure out ways to change them - or find a different way to look at that part of your job.
That way you will have have the financial security while you pursue your DREAM JOB
By the way - if you do have any promotional events, you could post them FREE at www.TheBestCityGuides.com - ROI is great as you do not have to spend a dime to post your events...
Thanks for the tips. I have already done several times a "pros and cons" of my current job, and I have two pros to over thirty cons. The cons are out of my control, I can not change them. For instance, I am on call 24/7. That's the nature of the beast in the business. People die all the time. That leads to another con: working holidays, weekends and nights. I've missed so many special occasions from the job that I'll never get back...friends weddings, graduations, etc.. I know having a business I'll put in a lot more hours, but at least I'll be able to shut down for an hour or two to participate in special events. With my current job, that is not the case. Heck, sick days aren't even offered. I'm expected to work even if I have the flu. One time I sprained my ankle (not work related) and the boss wouldn't let me rest a few days. He made me work, because they don't give sick days. I had to hobble to perform my duties. And we're expected to submit our vacation days on January 1st, all of them. Which means I have to predict the days I'll need off a year in advance. So, like I said, the cons outweigh the pros. I used to stay for the paycheck (one of the few pros), but have since learned money doesn't matter if you're miserable.
My daughter has brittle bone disease, and needs to take swimming lessons to help strengthen her muscles, but they won't let me take nights off for the class. Guess what, my daughter comes first. I know bringing in money from their paycheck equates to taking care of her, but her health is at stake.
As for savings, I have enough. I have a line of credit I'm using for both the biz and to live off of for awhile. A slippery slope, I understand, but a chance I'm willing to take.
Just make sure that your daughter can get health insurance. Becuase Cobra insurance can be very expensive
Regarding health insurance...both my wife and I have minimal health benefits (another con related to working for a small business). When our daughter was diagnosed with O.I. (Osteogenesis Imperfecta or Brittle Bone Disease) we knew we had to get good health coverage for her since she'd be in and out of the hospital so much (she's had 4 broken bones already, and she's 2 1/2). We live in CT, and we're lucky enough that CT has the Husky plan for children. We signed up for that. It's a great plan with max benefits, so she's covered.
I beleive if recession there is, that will impact some industries but not all.
People are more careful when they spend, and always looking for good deals.
I think you are on the good track (Halloween, Party, Bachelor Party, Fun Party, etc...) work pretty well.
I tend to think of things as a trickle down economy. Smaller Businesses tend to struggle through tough times and keep what they can while large businesses seem to cut & run. By this i mean the fortune 500's will announce THOUSANDS of high paying job cuts that will help them achieve profit goals even through painfull times while small businesses will keep on working.
The trickle down part is the impact of job cuts on smaller businesses by a smaller / less spending pool of available customers. The big businesses also cut spending as part of there profit strategy motivation as well.
So my response is its often trickle down and you probably have MORE job security if your personal business is sustainable than you do trying to keep the corporate coffers happy and hope you don't get cut if the economy does continue to shrink.
I always told myself in my other startups "i need to keep my day job boss happy" and never made the commitment to myself to be happy and i always beleived the day job was more stable. The first time i was upset, the second time i was furious. The third time i was lethargic and the 4th time i was just plane peed off. Being in the high tech industry the down turn has really been never ending and i just accepted it as a fact of life but for some reason my brain always thought it was more stable than doing it on my own.
I've since learned that the ONLY stability is that of which YOU create. No matter HOW hard i worked for someone else i was ALWAYS expendible. ALWAYS. Until you work for yourself and commit to yourself on a fulltime basis its hard to realize this.
So take pride in what you do, be proud of what you do and commit to making yourself succesfull on your own and start learning that employment is what you make of it - not what others give to you. I'm soooooo glad to be ending my career in the fortune 500 world and focusing on myself and my family - even though its harder work, its much more satisfying to see the fruits of my labor pay off in many ways beyond a week to week paycheck.
When i worked for a bank one day i was paged on friday not to come in on monday and they mailed home my stuff. When i worked for a high tech company one day i was told i was being laid off because they couldn't afford me - 8,000 other people were laid off and the PR spin was this was so they could make estimated EPS on stock and boy howdy did they. Another one i was laid off because the project was terminated and one more i just quite because i worked 24x7 and still had to fight for my job security - almost like the work wasn't good enougyh to them because it was expensive but at the same time they relied on me and couldn't justify it themselves so I had to justify my own position and if i'm going to do that i may as well WORK FOR MYSELF.. the boss wouldn't stand for me because he was too busy trying to stand for himself. Just a crappy place to work and glad i'm rid of it.
The best piece of advice I ever got on starting my business came from my mother. As I worked at my old company, waiting for the "layoff" shoe to drop, I prepared a business plan to start my own publishing company. The situation was similar to what you are facing today (2002--post-9/11 economy; very bad in the publishing world). I mentioned to my mother that I was worried about security--who would pay the rent, light and heat?
Her answer was classic. She said, +*"The only security you will ever need is between your ears."</s<br />
If you wait for the right time to start your business, it will never happen.
I have a quote magnet on my desk at work. It says "Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover!
Make the decision to be in charge of your own destiny. Put a strong, detailed business plan together to guide you like the North Star, and take the plunge.
Thanks for the sound advice and words of encouragement (thanks to your mother as well). Since originally posting this thread I have had just that revelation: I no longer am fretting over the economy.
Congratulations! You are one step closer to realizing your dreams.
Don't forget the business plan. In an unstable economy, a good business plan will help you stay focused. You need to also treat your plan as a living, breathing document (you need to reference it on a regular basis). The plan needs to incude: A Strategic Goal (where do you want to be at the end of 2008? $1 million in sales? 15 new accounts?). It must also include an operational plan (How you plan to get to $1 million in sales--new business? Increased business from existing accounts?). You also must have a contingency plan--what happens if the new business you projected doesn't come in? Or, if the increased business isn't there? How will you then reach your Strategic Goal?
In all likelihood, you will not recognize the plan you have in December as the same plan you wrote in January. The only way that happens is if you put it in the filing cabinet and never open it again. If that's the case, then don't bother with the plan. It will be a waste of time.
Remember this: People who have active business plans are more than twice as likely to succeed in their business as people who don't have a business plan.
Good luck with everything,
Not to belittle the whole economy and recession, but we all have to stay strong and toughen up. Once I was looking for sympathy and expressing to a co-worker that my sales were down from a year or two ago and I blamed the economy. He right away said, "Ken, people have money and they are still going to spend it". He then added: "They are just going to be choosier what they spend it on". I think if you have great quality products, they will speak for themselves. Sure, the luxury products are going to suffer in sales because people need food on the table and gas in the car. If you as a business owner have personality and passion, people are going to see through that and it will be contagious. I know I love Halloween and decorate like crazy for it. It is 2nd to Christmas in my home. If you got nice things....people are still going to buy.
And dont forget to display the sign "PROUDLY MADE IN AMERICA'
Frazzle, What did you decide to do?
Sorry, should've given you an update, it's just been so hectic here. Well, it's kind of a long story, but I'll try to sum it up...
I was on the fence as you know as to whether I should take the plunge or not. About 2 mos. ago I had an email correspondence with a big company about buying some of their product. The gentleman I was speaking to asked about my business, and when I told him what I did he mentioned he may need my services in the future. Well, as much as I wanted to be optimistic about the prospect, I knew better than to get my hopes up, and dismissed it as a nil opportunity and all but forgot about it. A few weeks pass, and my day job was really starting to grind me down. I wanted to leave, but was reluctant to b/c of the whole recession and state of the economy going on. What I really needed was something to prompt me to make the move.
And then, at my darkest hour of working and out of the clear blue, I received a phone call. It was from the big company I spoke to weeks before. They wanted to hire me for some work, and asked when I could fly out there to do it. I was estatic. Well, I wanted to tell them "right away", but of course I was still working the day job and couldn't leave. So I told the company it would be about a month. They were fine with that. The next day I walked into my day job and handed my one month notice. Why one mo. and not 2 weeks? Well, it's a small place with only 5 people, myself included. Two of the employees had vacations in the coming weeks, so my departure would have left the business very short handed while trying to find my replacement. So, being the nice guy I occasionally am, I stuck through for the month. Mind you, I hate my job, but the people I work for and work with always treated me ok, so I felt I owed it to them to stay.
Now, here we are, May 23rd, 2008. I have one day left of working the day job and that's it. No more, ever! From then on, I control my destiny. And in another week, I fly out to a very large and prestigous account. Any reservations I may have had before about leaving the day job are gone. And just today, I was comparing this years sales to last years sales, and my sales are up over 500% for 2008 compared to '07. So I think I'll be ok, and have no more worries. Well, some worries, but the typical kind that go with running a business.
Congratulations on taking control of your own future. You took a step out in faith and now you are now about to start the next chapter in your life and you will be at the wheel. All the best of luck to you!
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Congratulations! Stepping away from a job or a career to start or work at your own full time business is a very scary and thrilling experience. Over the years I have worked with over 352 entrepreneurs starting or developing their own business and there is nothing more fulfilling than hearing of their successes. I wish you the best of good fortune with your business.
I saw one of your earlier posts that you had not created a business plan for your business. Here's some advice from 26 year experience: One things I've learned is how important it is to develop a plan for your business - it does not have to be anything fancy ... but when you create the plan it does become a road map for you to follow. Now that you are committing your self full time to the business do try to carve out some time to create a plan. You don't have to nail it completely the first time you sit down to come up with one. To give you something to shoot for here is what one should consist of (especially if you ever plan to look for funding or capital for your business from banks or other funding sources or investors):
- Executive Summary
- Market Opportunity
- Vision, Mission, & Objectives
- Business Strategy
- Financial Plan
- Capital Requirements
When you start you will probably feel you don't have enough data, information or even experience to complete some of the sections. Don't worry about that; focus on the ones that you can do some work on and that you can get put to paper. They can be refined and revised as you go and the other sections you can work on or seek help with to get them down on paper when you need to have them done. Once you have a good working draft ... the whole plan could be polished further. Treat it as a work in process and work on it as you can a little at a time. The process of thinking about it just by itself will help you with your business.
Again, good luck to you and best wishes.
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With all this talk of a recession and consumer spending on the decline due to the housing market, I'm a little wary of quitting my job and running my business full time. I hate my work, and will be the death of me if I don't get out soon, but hate it or not, it's a recession proof business, whereas the retail business I run is not. Just looking for input from you good folks, should I be overly concerned about all this talk of a recession and how it will impact business?