Originally Posted by John Dessauer on December 28, 2015
Sometimes the only financial option for a budding entrepreneur is to start a business part-time, while continuing to work full-time at a regular job. Keeping that full-time job can pay the bills, buy groceries, and reduce all sorts of financial risks and strain. It also allows more room for a beginner’s errors and time to iron out any problems in the new business.
Working two jobs can cause a huge amount of stress and physical exhaustion for any entrepreneur. Family life can really suffer, not to mention romance and marriage. Vacations and holidays may become non-existent, especially during the early days of developing the business. Also, health problems may develop, or any existing ones may worsen. The entrepreneur must always be careful to get enough sleep and proper nutrition to stay strong and healthy.
To make such an arrangement work, an entrepreneur needs a strong support system consisting of spouse, family, and friends. Support at home can be the major factor that makes or breaks a new business. Things like using joint savings, part of a spouse’s salary, or other family resources for startup costs are issues that will require mutual decisions. Even single, childless entrepreneurs will need some form of support from a network of friends or colleagues at times.
Starting a business part-time has several advantages. You can retain the benefits from your regular job, such as health and dental insurance, 401K matching contributions, or other perks. Keeping the full-time salary and the perks will relieve the pressure to succeed right away. If the new business doesn’t prosper immediately, or building public trust and a steady flow of customers or renters takes more time than expected, there won’t be so much stress and worry. Also, keeping stress levels down and the mortgage paid will help the entrepreneur from becoming burned out from working two jobs.
While at your full-time job concentrate only on work and don’t be tempted to do tasks for your new business. Don’t use company time or resources for your business needs, such as their computers, copy machines, or mailing supplies. Also, don’t make private business calls or try and negotiate deals while at your full-time job. This can be distracting to fellow employees and can cause more stress and trouble for you.
Some entrepreneurs prefer to tell their employers about their side business, but some do not see this as necessary. Some companies require their employees to sign legal agreements stating they will not become their employer’s competitor, so make sure your business is not in direct competition with your present employer if you have signed such a document.
One of the keys to success is to choose a business that will work well part-time, especially a hobby in which the entrepreneur has considerable experience, such as real estate. This person would be a prime candidate for starting a part-time business working out of their already existing home office. They could gradually expand their business by working on their rentals or flip properties during their off-time.
“Remember, wealth has nothing to do with money, success has everything to do with failure, and life is as simple as you make it.” – John Dessauer