considering business

Have You Considered Business?

Some thoughts of why getting into business may (or may not) be best for you

I’m a big fan of women who are successful in business. I love to hear the stories of these women’s journey to success.

The former editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan magazine, Helen Gurley Brown, said, “Nearly every glamorous, wealthy, successful career woman you might envy now started out as some kind of schlep.” In other words, we all have to start somewhere!

You can look at business from several different vantage points:

  • As a business owner in your own business you work in,
  • As an investor in someone else’s business, or
  • As an inventor, writer, or product creator who produces their masterpiece one time, but sells it again and again.

Whichever path or paths you take, getting started can be relatively simple.

As I travel and teach, women often ask me how they can become successful in business. My response is always, “Getting started in business simply begins with an idea. We all have ideas. It’s just a matter of rising to the occasion and putting that idea into practice.”

Putting ideas into practice

The good news is that ideas are free and plentiful! Here are just a few to get your mind going:

The Internet has opened up a whole new world to budding and seasoned entrepreneurs and inventors. Apple changed the playing field with its introduction of apps. If you know tech, consider building an app and offer it to the world.

The publishing world has been revolutionized by eBooks. A couple of friends were experimenting with how to publish an eBook themselves. They did a lot of research and learned the step-by-step process.

To see if their process worked, they wrote a 20-page eBook on how to publish an eBook. From this “experiment,” they now make about $200 per month. These two friends took their knowledge and turned it into an asset.

My friend Marilyn’s weak spot was designer handbags. Most of her luxury spending was on the latest Louis Vuitton, Armani, Prada, or Gucci purses. Her friends would occasionally ask to borrow them.

Jokingly, one day her best friend said, “You would make a fortune renting out your handbags.” The lights went on! Now, Marilyn makes a healthy profit every month from her small boutique of rental handbags. She has since expanded into other designer rental items as well. It’s as simple as a Prada purse.

Getting into business can be that easy. It takes an idea and it requires action.

Count the cost

As with anything, there is much to be gained from being in business, but there are costs to consider. Though the ideas are free, putting those ideas into practice will cost you time, energy, and money. Thankfully, there are some amazing pros that come alone with the package.

The Pros of Owning Your Own Business

  • Control
    You have full control of the income, expenses, and debt.
  • Leverage of OPM (Other People’s Money)
    If you choose to raise money for your business, you can fund the start-up or growth with investors’ money. If you are investing in someone else’s private company, then you are the OPM.
  • Leverage of OPT (Other People’s Time)
    Eventually OPT can replace your time completely. If you are working in someone else’s business, then you are the OPT.
  • Unlimited revenue
    There is no limit to how much revenue you and your company can make.
  • Tax advantages
    Most of the tax law, in most countries, is geared towards reducing the taxes of business owners. Almost all business expenses are deductible, meaning you deduct them against the revenue, which reduces the company’s taxable income.
  • Flexible hours
    You set your own hours.
  • Freedom to express yourself
    A business can support you in being true to you. You can fully express who you are and what you stand for through your business.
  • Home-based business
    Include your children. What a great education for them!

The Cons of Owning Your Own Business

  • Difficult
    Operating a business is the most difficult of the four asset classes.
  • High failure rate
    Nine out of ten businesses fail within the first five years.
  • Many hours
    Lots of hours are required. This will not be a 9-5 job.
  • No guarantee
    There is no guaranteed or steady paycheck.
  • People
    You must deal with and manage people—employees, clients, consultants, etc.
    This includes their various personalities, moods, and all their quirks. Unless this is your strong suit, this could be stressful.

Business isn’t for everyone but for those who decide to take the plunge it can be extremely rewarding. The important aspect is you’re spending your time building an asset - if done right, an asset that can produce for generations.

Whether you decide to pursue a business or just wish to improve your effectiveness and efficiency, goal setting is an absolute must. If you’re unsure of how to set and achieve your goals, you can download a free guide here.

Discover an idea, set your goals, and take action.

Original publish date: March 27, 2014

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