If you’re thinking about striking out on your own, you’re in good company. The number of women-owned businesses is growing twice as fast as the number of male-owned businesses. In Working Mother’s survey, one in ten working moms were self-employed. This isn’t just a trend, ladies; it’s a movement! Think you’d like to be your own boss? Here are the signs that you’re ready:
1) You’re comfortable with some risk, including giving up the consistency of weekly paychecks. Launching any new biz takes some time, so having funds set aside to see you through the start-up phase is critical.
2) You’ve done your research and found your twist. It seems obvious, but you’ve got to have pretty strong evidence that there’s a market for your product or service, and that you’re going to have something new and cool to bring to the market.
3) You’re committed for the long haul. The road to becoming a successful entrepreneur can be bumpy. After all, about half of all small businesses fail within 5 years, according to the Small Business Association. Realize that stumbling blocks and failures may dot the road on your way to success. Having a long-term plan—and a lot of support—will help you stay the course.
4) You’re self-motivated and confident. Nobody will be watching over your shoulder if you procrastinate. You will have only yourself to please. You need to be driven and have the self-discipline to be your own boss. You will likely not only work long and hard but will also need to sell yourself and talk up your business. If you don’t feel comfortable self-promoting, this may not be for you.
5) You’re a healthy worrier. Too much anxiety can be paralyzing. But if you thoughtfully replay things in your mind and look for ways you might do something better next time around, you’ll drive your business forward. People who tend to rest on their laurels often overlook opportunities or fail to see potential pitfalls.
6) You’re flexible. You are someone who likes change and adapts quickly. You don’t mind if things don’t always go according to plan. In fact, to you, shaking things up is fun, not frustrating.
7) You see the world how it actually is, rather than how you think it should be. Optimists are welcome but you also must be a realist. A key strength will be your ability to step back and assess with clear eyes what’s working and what’s not.
Illustrated by Nishan Akgulian