Quit your job to start a business

It’s okay to quit your job to start a business but based on data, oftentimes, quitting your job does not guarantee you’ll make it big as an entrepreneur.

Even though there are many professionals who have successfully shifted their focus to start their own businesses, whose stories might even inspire your decision, there are certain steps you must take if you plan to break even as a career turned entrepreneur.

For example, according to a recent stat by US Bureau of Labor, only 3 out of 10 businesses make it to the first 10 years. In developing countries like Nigeria, just 2 out f 10 survive their first five years.

With such an alarming statistics, you can see it’s not all smooth and straight. So, there’s much to be concerned about, before you take that leap to switch careers

Personally, every time I see aspiring online entrepreneurs set up their business website and then close down the websites after a year, I feel very concerned.

So, i usually tell prospective entrepreneurs, you don’t want to leave your career to start a business without asking yourself certain questions that will give you clarity on the journey.

In this guide, i’ll be listing out some of these questions that have actually worked other for other entrepreneurs like you, and how you should use them to get clarity on your business journey.

The first key thing to do to before quitting your job to start a business is to find out why you want to make a switch in your career.

To be fair, you might have some idea about why you want to leave or the possible scenarios that’s driving you but to be really sure about your motives, you want to find out your reasons clearly.

Find out, is it because you’re tired of your current job, you’re not getting paid enough or you just want to switch to an area you can make a lot more difference.

Write down all your answers in a sheet of paper and analyze which of those answers is your biggest motivating influence.

Whatever it is, finding your your why will give you a potent reason to take on a move. It will also give you clarity on the kind of business or industry that will lead you to actualize your goals of building a successful business.

And overall, it will give you an idea on whether you have a really good reason to switch careers or not.

You can’t afford to quit your job to start a business online or offline without evaluating the viability of your idea.

Before you think of running with your idea, you need to find out; is there really an actual need for this idea? Are there other entrepreneurs making it with this kind of business idea?

Like, find out if there are other successful businesses like that or something close. To bring it even further home, find out, are there actual people in need of solutions like the one your business will get to offer.

Truth be told, your skill, idea, hobby, or passion might not have actual capacity to pay your bills the day you get started, the day after or even five years down the line.

The fact you have a great idea does not always mean there are people looking to pay for it.

That’s why, one of the best ways to know if your business idea can be viable is to find out if other people actually in need of such products or services you intend to offer and also if there are other businesses doing successfully well in that area.

Let me give you a practical example…

Take for example, you love water skiing. It gives you joy. And the business behind this passion is being a water ski instructor. Unfortunately, there are no important rivers, oceans or lakes in your current location.

In such a situation, it’s natural you practically have very low possibility of making money with that passion if you want to target people in that location.

In that case it’s easy to deduce that such passion may not get you a good business that can support your lifestyle or expectations. And for that reason, you’d want to ignore this idea and try something else or leave the location you are and move elsewhere to start the business if possible.

This is how it works with other ideas, passion and skills. Based on certain factors, all ideas do not have the same market value.

So, if you want to leave your job to start a business successfully, research the market first, find out other successful people in that field, decide the market value and then think about the possible outcomes for your business, based on your findings.

Do I have the financial resources to build and sustain a business if I leave my job today? This is the next question to ask yourself, before you quit your job to start a business.

Finding out about your financial capacity is one key questions to ask yourself before leaving your job to start a business | Photos by Karolina Grabowska via Pexels

It’s true you can start a business with almost zero capital. But, you can’t build the next Google or ChatGPT without a decent start up capital.

Forget about most of the things you read online. Starting a business online or offline needs money. No matter how little it is.

Besides the resources you need to build the business up front, you’ll also need money to survive until the business makes profit.

These are part of the things you should consider if you plan to quit your job to start a business successfully.

It’s possible you can always get people to invest in your business or raise business funding along the line. But in some cases, you may need to show a growth track record that demonstrates your business viability before you can get such fundings.

So either ways you’ll need back up funds. And the best way to get this in place, is to save up before leaving your job to start your business.

Save up some money, including the one you”ll need to survive on for a period of say 1-2 years before the business makes a good profit.

You’ll also need money to run some basic needs of the business outside set up. Like business promotion, business tools, marketing and PR etc.

While money may not be the number one thing to consider before quitting your job to start your online business, it is very important to the overall success and stability of your business.

Before you think of quitting your job to start a business, you need to consider, if you have the requisite skills that will be needed to grow your business or whether you’re going to learn those skills and if yes, the duration of time it will take.

Besides having the passion to start your online business, you must also have the skills to sell what you’re passionate about, if you want to be successful in that niche.

Take for example, if you’re passionate about public speaking and you want to start a business around that, but right now you can only handle audiences in small circles like your colleagues in school, work place or like minds…

You’ll find that this is not the exact kind of audience that will pay you the money that will eventually sustain your business after you quit your job.

So to get to evolve a more influential and higher paying brand like the Tony Robbins, Lisa Nichols, Eric Thomas, etc. of this world you’ll want to become really good at building your skills and well equipped at selling this thing you’re passionate about.

Knowing whether you have the skills to sell your passion or not will get you ready to know if you should work on these skills and how long it would take you to work on it.

These are strong deciding factors that will help you understand your readiness to quit your job.

Even when you’re sure about the viability of your idea, before quitting your job to start a business, you want to identify the unique value you’re offering that will differentiate your brand from other businesses in your niche.

If your passion lies in a business niche that’s already saturated with people, it is not enough that you have skills that are sellable in that niche; you’ll also want to bring a very unique value that will make you exceptional and attractive to your target audience.

This is what we call carving a niche for yourself.

So after you become aware that your skills can really help others, you have to find a way to offer the help in a very unique way that no one else is doing.

This is how businesses evolve to become exceptional brands. This is why businesses like Apple, Facebook, Amazon keep growing to outpace their competitions.

You can’t compete with top existing brands from their unique position. They already have an advantage there. So, you want to create your own space and excel right there.

Truth be told, quitting your job to start a business can be really inspiring especially talking about a flexible business like an online business which can literally free up your time to do other things.

But having an excellent idea does not always mean you’re ready to get started with the ideas right away. So, you want to ask yourself: am i really ready for this right now?

Am i actually ready for this? This is one of the key questions to ask before embarking on starting your own business | photos by Anna Shvets via Pexels

Being tired of your work or feeling that it’s time to get on to something that’s more flexible for you is not just enough reason to get started.

You have to be mentally and physically prepared for the rigors of starting a business. Because whether you’re starting your business online or offline, starting a new business will place certain demands on you.

For example, you may have to do away with some habits, learn new skills or start out with some uncomfortable routines.

All these are things you should be mentally and physically prepared for. At least, to a reasonable extent, if you don’t plan to stop somewhere.

It’s true, your passion is not necessarily what you should start a business with but at the same time, your passion can give you the sustaining power you need for a new business, until your business gains traction.

Of course, I may not entirely be of the opinion that you should start a business with your passion alone. But making a personal audit about your life and getting to know about an start a business you’re passionate about can give you the sense of fulfillment you need with your business.

There is nothing as beautiful as making money and being happy and fulfilled because you’re adding real value to others.

In fact this is the essence of living, being able to know that you actually lived.

These are strong deciding factors that will help you understand your readiness to quit your job.

Another question you want to ask yourself before quitting your job to start a business is, do I have a sustainable business plan that can show possible projections for my business?

Of course starting a business is a risk.

But quitting your job to start a business is a bigger risk. So, you have to be sure to a reasonable extent that this is a risk worth taking.

It is not enough to know that there’s a market need for your business idea, you have to see some real data backed projections for your business.

You have to be able to see how you can get from point A to B, what it will cost you. What will happen if you can’t get there? And what you can do to get you from one point to another in your business.

Even when you don’t need a completely detailed plan of action. You need something substantial to build your idea and expand on it.

This vision map or action plan will shape your decision in the future as your business grows.

Do not focus on building businesses out of your head. Focus on building ideas that can thrive beyond the grindings of the business world.

Final Words

Asking yourself these questions will help you understand your preparedness or readiness to leave your job and start a business. It will give you clarity on whether to leave or stay on your job.

If you can’t answer these questions correctly, then you don’t have enough answers to understand the next step you should take. And in that case it’s better to stay where you are until you have some idea about your next step.

Don’t go about quitting your job to start an online business because of the bling bling you see on the social media.

Forget about the hype about being a business owner. There’s a lot of grits and effort you’ll need to put in to build a thriving business. And you should only get started when you know you’re truly ready to take that leap.

So, there you have it. Need to know more about your readiness before you start your next business? Talk to us here. And you can sign up here to learn tech driven skills that will get you equipped on your business journey.

Now, it’s over to you. What’s your biggest challenges when it comes to leaving your job to start a new business? Drop your comments below.

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Victor Winners

Victor Winners

A Nigerian trained Law graduate and British LL.M candidate, using his widespread experience in tech, law and innovation, to evolve cutting edge and growth driven solutions for brands and businesses in Africa and beyond.As a Law-trained tech expert, Victor brings in over 7 years experience working in the Digital Marketing, SEO, Web Development, Online Publishing, Social Media and Legaltech sectors, to create result driven content and innovative solutions to brands and businesses.Named as one of the top 50 Web Design Influencers Globally, Victor Winners started one of Africa's most widely read blogs on Digital Marketing and Strategy.With this platform, he has impacted the lives of over 2 million readers spanning more than 135 countries in 8+ years

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