Employee to Entrepreneur - What You Should Know
This article has been written in collaboration with Yuva, the Entrepreneurship Cell of the Shaheed Sukhdev College of Business Studies
On the joining day at a big multinational corporation, my father was asked by his boss about where did he see himself ten years hence. And my dad replied, unflinching, “At the helm of my own business.”
Well, for me, that is a part of family folklore and the number one reason in the transition from an employee to an entrepreneur is passion.
The journey one undertakes from being in a job to owning one’s own business is a hardy one and not for the weak-hearted. Research says that entrepreneurship is an extremely lonely journey. Entrepreneurs lack the time to create any new social relations or nurture any existing friendships as they are responsible for all the decision making and are burdened with the pressures of setting up a business and leading a team. There is no established support system for sharing the load of the work and the despairs that come along with it or even someone to share the little joys with. The Gallup Wellbeing Index showed that 45% of entrepreneurs report being stressed as compared to 42% of “other workers.” Then what makes an entrepreneur take the leap of faith?
One must be overridden with a burning desire to walk the path less traveled; to leave the comfort of a cushy, well-paying job, and then dive into the sea of financial uncertainty and risks.
The entrepreneurial mindset is a leap of faith that involves taking a number of baby steps- from conquering one’s fears to reaching a state of emotional stability that enables risk-taking.
The reasons for being an entrepreneur must also be crystal clear in one’s mind- one should not start a startup only because their present job is less challenging or less paying. Quitting a job immediately can be extremely risky as it can take time to get a business off the ground. Such a step should only be taken if they are 100% convinced of their dream of being on their own.
The dream must be backed by an equally creative idea; an idea that is not only innovative but also technologically sound and relevant in today’s world. One must believe that his/her idea will deliver.
The idea must be allowed to incubate over a period of time.
It will certainly help if the idea is backed by solid market research and is able to find its niche. A small sample market analysis can also be conducted to check the viability. Once the idea has been concretized, one must make a project report- a proper business plan which will outline all the major essentials- the budget, the inventory, the equipment, the marketing strategy, and the targeted segments. Such a road map will lead one in the right direction by providing guidance and time-bound goals.
Another important pillar of a new venture is team building. One must build a network that can include experts ranging from different spheres- finance to industry. It’s good to learn from the experiences of other people.
It is also important that the entrepreneur becomes a jack-of-all-trades and becomes experienced in different areas of the business as when you run a company, everything is your job.
Change is the only constant in entrepreneurship, and so there is a need to constantly adapt to the ever-dynamic environment. The story of startups like Amazon are awe-inspiring and should be looked up to in times of distress. What started off as an online book retailer, has become one of the world’s most valuable public company.
The success is assured as fortune favors the bold.
In today’s times when the world is in the midst of a pandemic and the business scenario is mostly gloomy, I urge everyone to look for the silver linings in the clouds of uncertainty and anxiety. It is undoubtedly a time of despair, but it is also a time of hope. The braveheart entrepreneurs must realize that tough times always bring opportunities along. One has to be driven enough to look for solutions to the problems that COVID brings forth. Startups that understand the new normal would try to bring out the best in themselves and capitalize on the new trends. In India, the government’s focus on self-reliance can help budding entrepreneurs to get easy loans and permits without the usual restrictive red-tapism. Also, there is an abundance of skilled manpower availability due to the cutting down of jobs in the bigger corporates.
It is important to know that success does not come without adversity. Don’t wait for an opportunity, create it. So, folks, this time is like no other. Get.. Set.. Go..
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