by: Farnoosh Brock of Prolific Living LLC
Believing in your dreams and having faith in yourself is imperative to being successful at your career. That much we can agree on. But when it comes to pursuing your dream career and starting your own business, you need more than a leap of faith and a strong determination. You need a smart exit plan that makes your move successful and prepares you for everything that lies ahead.
In our upcoming Women of Power Summit, I am honored to be talking to you at length on this topic: Lessons in Transition from Employee to Entrepreneur: Mistakes to Avoid and Secrets to Starting Your Own Business. And if you haven’t yet registered for this powerful summit, be sure to do that here (link here to the summit) In this post, I want to give you a short preview to get you pumped for our session!
If you have been fumbling around in your corporate job for a while (read 2 to 5 years) looking for a place to belong, to thrive or to simply feel fulfilled, and you still can’t find it, you might just be ready to strike out on your own.
Fun fact: You can start your own company or business without a background in accounting, without a fancy MBA and in fact, without any prior experience running a business (Besides, if you had prior experience running your own business, would you be back working for someone else and thus be in this pickle in the first place? Chances are slim to none!)
So yes, you can start and run a successful business regardless of what you majored in college or if you even went to college and regardless of what you did at your corporate job and also, most importantly, regardless of how old you are or how many careers you’ve had. These are not barriers, honey!
This doesn’t mean you can run a company on hopes and wishful thinking. It means that you can learn and implement whatever you need in this brave new economy because you have all the tools and resources at your disposal like never before. The advent of technology has made our dream careers more accessible than ever and you can use your wits and your brains to figure it all out.
But first, you need to make the transition from your corporate job to self-employment with a smart and well-thought-out exit plan. I am so passionate about this topic that I teach a class, Smart Exit Blueprint, to show corporate professionals exactly how to do this. I took a sneak peek into my class material and want to give you my top 8 strategies to get you started on creating your smart exit plan:
1. Get in the right mindset: The corporate world is not conducive to the mindset you need to succeed as an entrepreneur. You are probably wallowing in self-limiting beliefs and the opinions of naysayers. It’s time to turn it around. So first, pull yourself out of the mindset that has held you back. Start with studying the mindset of some of your successful role models and really nurture the right mindset until it takes hold. For more, see 8 Success Mindsets for Employment vs. Entrepreneurship
2. Stop screwing around in your day job: This is no longer your long-term career so don’t treat it as such. Your minutes and hours count now so use them well. I use this motto for my clients who are on the cusp of leaving their jobs: Get the work done and be done! Know when to stop working. Be ethical about what you need to get done but there is no reason to go “above and beyond” whatsoever. You are only there to grow your savings and fund your future business. Create boundaries and learn to say no. For more on when and how to say no, click here .
3. Put your financial house in order: You need less money to survive than you think and you have more than you believe. Your mindset shift will teach you that self-employment is about creating wealth whereas a corporate job is about making money. Then focus on where your money is going and if that is the lifestyle you want to support as you move into self-employment. Examine your spending habits, your lifestyle and adjust your whole life – not just your career – to becoming self-employed.
4. Prepare for becoming your own boss: The biggest adjustment in self-employment is holding yourself accountable and responsible. The rewards are very different and you are on your own for better or for worse. You are your own boss, your own master, and the decisions happen with you. You take the blame for the fall and you take the credit for the rise. And it’s exhilarating but it takes adjustment. You need to mentally, emotionally and even physically prepare for this and hold yourself accountable to your dreams and promises as well as be kind to yourself. More on becoming your own boss here….
5. Check in with your support group: Making the transition on your own is totally possible but it’s much easier, more fun and successful when you have the support of (select) family and friends as well as the right communities and preferably a mentor or a coach. As far as family and friends go, focus on your life partner the ultimate pillar of support. Get them onboard early on and stop there. With your friends, observe who is not supportive of your move and create a healthy distance rather than convincing them or getting hurt. Then find the right communities to join and most of all, invest in a coach or mentor. You don’t have to do this alone. You can have the help and support to get you going. Don’t be a hero. Ask for support but do it in the right places and from the right people.
6. Start your side-hustle ASAP: As you are getting poised for exit, create your side-hustle which will eventually become your fully fledged business. It is never too early to start your business idea. Consistency is your best friend. You are never going to have 100% of your time to dedicate to your business even if you didn’t have a job. So start your side-hustle today if you haven’t already and build on it slowly every single day. My super top secret advice is this: you must do something – anything – that moves your side-hustle forward everyday.
7. Establish a non-negotiable routine to build your business: Routines are your ally when you are balancing your job and your fledgling business so create blocks of time and energy that you are devoting only to your business. Treat these as sacred. Settle firmly into this routine and make it a part of your daily ritual. Re-shuffle your priorities if need be and set new boundaries for your day job to accommodate yourself. Build your side-hustle slowly during those new blocks of time.
8. Give yourself permission to do this, to dream it, to build it, even to fail at it: Listen, you need to get this out of your system and you need to see it through. Stop asking for permission. Stop asking for validation. This is your dream. And the time to go after it is now. Let go of any guilt or peer pressure that you are carrying because if you bring those emotions into your business, it will make life very difficult. Embrace your decision to pursue your own business then go do it.
I can’t wait to share more strategies and meet you and answer your questions on the Women of Power Summit later this month. Until then, feel free to contact me with any questions: firstname.lastname@example.org.