Advice for Entrepreneurs: Don’t Quit Your Day Job (Yet!)

Advice for Entrepreneurs: Don’t Quit Your Day Job (Yet!)

I’d like to preface this conversation by admitting that I didn’t follow the advice I’m about to share with all you wannabe entrepreneurs. In fact, I jumped headlong into the world of unemployment hoping to chase the dream of working for myself without batting a single eyelash. However, some of you will find that you just don’t thrive under that kind of pressure in the way you might be telling yourself you will right now.

Fact is, when the day to quit your job comes, it will feel so nice to have some sort of cushion underneath you, to prevent anxiety (and the harsh realities of life) from setting in immediately. It doesn’t matter what you’re thinking of doing, or what you’re guestimated startup costs will be; starting a business with zero cash flow is hard.

Few who’ve made it would recommend going this route either, regardless of how their entrepreneurial journey started, and where it is now.

Here are a few good reasons NOT to quit your day job just yet, no matter how good your startup concept may seem:

You can’t pay bills without money coming in.

This harsh reality hits many entrepreneurs straight in the nose, somewhere in month two after quitting their job. The credit cards really start cooking, the bills pile up, and your business’s startup costs will continue to mount no matter how hard you try to push them out of your mind.

You have no clue what you’re getting into — or if you even want to get into it in the first place!

I can’t tell you how many people I’ve heard say they want to dive with Great White Sharks, or jump out of an airplane with nothing but a backpack (parachute) to protect them from the hard ground below. And as Steve Harvey has famously said (paraphrased): “You’ll never know until you jump.”

However, many regret such decisions when it comes time to stare at the ground below and the abyss of nothingness that separates them from it. Sharks? Don’t get me started on how crazy that idea is?

Now, you do have to try new things to find your true calling, but what if you’re planning isn’t for you? You’ll likely have to turn around and get another J.O.B. in the interim between ideas anyway.

You’ll be so scared it’s likely you’ll make some mistakes that could have been avoided.

The fear of the unknown and failure are a human’s worst enemy at times. Heck, for most of the time and for most of the people on this planet, right?

And be honest with yourself here: You’re going to be scared as hell anyway just trying to build this baby you’ve been envisioning for the last several months, even years. Don’t add the fear of “where is my family going to live after the mortgage company forecloses at the end of the month”.

You understand that Jim Rohn was right when he said…

“Work full time at your job and part time on your fortune.”

This scenario won’t work for all of us because some people need to be perched on the brink of death or complete ruin before they’ll do what really matters most to their future. However, the desire to start a successful business needs to be backed with a solid game plan. Walking straight from your secure job into the minefield of entrepreneurship will likely make obtaining that fortune much harder than it needs to be.

In fact, the entrepreneur of all entrepreneurs, Richard Branson, says in order to consider your business a full-time gig, you need partners or outside investors who have your back, financially and otherwise.

Don’t Care What the Experts Say?

If you don’t care about the uncertainty, have just came into a windfall of money, or spent your spare time building an app that Facebook wants to buy for hundreds of millions, ignore this advice and just go charge after it!

Just because the majority who quit their job on a whim in search of entrepreneurial glory will fall flat on their face doesn’t mean that you will too. Sometimes you have to ignore all the little voices around you, and the one in your head, to find what truly completes you in life.

Main Image Credit: Alison Elizabeth X/Flickr

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