So is it possible to start a business without quitting your job?
The good news is that it is possible (at least for a while) to start a business and keep your job.
Keeping your job and building your business at the same time isn’t a miracle, rather it’s about being efficient and productive.
The objective of this guide is to share with you 10 steps so that you can start your business without giving up the income that your work offers. In the same way, we will explain to you where to find the time to achieve it, as well as how to invest your time so that this transition is as easy and fast as possible.
Now, before explaining step by step how to start a business from your job, we want to invite you to have a positive mindset towards your current job.
See your work in the right light:
No matter what kind of job you have, make sure you consider it a blessing and not a punishment for your life.
Your current job is not stopping your dreams, it is keeping you afloat. You need that check, otherwise, you wouldn’t have enough money to support yourself while you learn how to start a business.
So instead of complaining about your current job, consider it this way:
You are fortunate to receive the capital for your company every fortnight from your work. Most investors like to see entrepreneurs invest in themselves first, and you need that check and your savings to make it happen.
How to start a business without quitting your job:
Many people want to start a business without having to give up the security of a job, or at least at the beginning, where there is so much uncertainty in your business idea. Here you will find how to achieve it successfully.
1. Find your business idea in your workplace
The most important thing is that this first idea you think of starts from your passion. In other words, your business idea arises from what you know more than others, from what you like and enjoy doing, and from the needs that you see around you.
If you can’t think of anything, think about what tools you can learn and experiment with and then teach them to others who need them. The office, or your workplace, is a good place to find business opportunities based on the needs of your colleagues.
Here we explain how:
Ask questions in your office:
For this, you must be attentive and have a willingness to observe, ask questions, listen actively and thus detect possible problems to solve.
When a group of people has a problem and you have a valuable solution for them, you can create a business there, an exchange of value.
You must be clear, although it is not definitive forever, about a specific problem and a specific solution that you will offer to that problem, and to whom. This is your ideal client.
Offer to help them:
You can have your first clients without them paying you with money. By this I mean that they can pay you in different ways, looking for an exchange of value.
For example, when you are starting, the testimonials and feedback from your first clients are much more important to you than the money itself.
The first generates credibility, something fundamental to open doors and possibilities with new clients. So offer your service to others and ask them for a testimonial in return.
This will be like climbing the first step of the ladder, and to get your next clients you will already be a little more advanced, you will have credibility and experience as builders providing the service you offer.
Evaluate everything that is happening:
Write down how the conversations take place, how your product or service behaves, what things you advise work for them, and what things do not.
When you’re learning how to start a business while you work, this is the key time to document everything and record everything so you can quickly improve and grow.
Write down every criticism you get, every comment and suggestion, and define a time when you will sit down and review those notes and do something about it. Notes alone are useless, they should lead you to action, to improve something, to change something.
And above all, ask for criticism. When you talk to someone or work with someone, ask them for criticism, ask them to be completely honest and tell you everything they think. This is the only way to improve.
Work on how you will transmit (sell) what you do:
Finally, take time to think, based on the experience you gained working with these people, your first clients, how you will communicate to the universe of potential clients what you do, what is the benefit of working with you, etc.
This is the main benefit of offering your work “for free” since through an exchange of value, you will be fine-tuning your proposal thanks to the feedback you receive; you will know the sensitive points, what interests your client, and the best way to exploit this information.
2. Take into account the legal part
When we talk about the legal part, we mean that there are no conflicts of interest between your business idea and the current company in which you are working.
If your business is part of the same market as your current job, you need to treat it very carefully. Aspects such as the clients of the company where you work, the procedures, and the intellectual property should not be used for your private interests.
Depending on the position you hold, you may have signed exclusive contracts, so you should be aware of not working for a competitor or against your current company for a certain time.
You must know exactly what your rights are, your commitments, and what you can and cannot do. This will give you the peace of mind to act correctly, and in case of doubt, contact a lawyer to advise you.
3. Respect your office hours and plan your days well
You must be clear about, and respect, the fact that your current job is the main and most important source of income, so you must plan your days well so that, in the process of learning how to start a business, your productivity is not affected.
Until you’re ready to quit and make your business a new priority, you should put your office work first. So do your best to be the best in your current job. Work to stay focused and do things right.
It is not about working more hours, but about doing it intelligently:
You have the same 24 hours that the most successful entrepreneurs in history have. Perhaps, for you, working hours and hours in a row is synonymous with respect, productivity, and efficiency. However, what this shows is your inability to plan and manage your time, and eventually your health.
The key to learning how to start a business without quitting your job lies in the little strategic things you do every day and consistently.
Therein lies the key to building successful businesses. So drop the excessive work, get away from the distractions and give your work and your business idea the attention and focus they demand.
Important note: Surely you are wondering how to work on your business while you are at work; For this, you will find at the end of the article a guide with time slots (24 hours a week) to work on your business strategically, focusing on what is important without forgetting your current priorities.
4. Invest in the necessary resources to start your business
As long as you have a secure job, it’s a good idea to do as much foundational work as you can. Design your business model, secure the licenses or certificates you will need, and establish the type of organization you will have.
It’s also a good idea to make the necessary investments, such as buying equipment you may need and paying for any legal paperwork associated with your business.
You might feel like it’s a waste to spend this money upfront before you start seeing profits, but it’s worth it when you learn how to start a business.
The more things you do before starting your business, the more profit you will have and the less capital you will need to enter the market. In short, this is a fundamental variable to creating profitable businesses.
In the same way, you can take the opportunity to work on the development of your brand and a good market strategy. It’s easier to get out of all this before you start doing business.
5. Create a page where you can capture your value proposition
Do you remember the exchange of value that was offered at the beginning with your co-workers? Once you have offered your service or product, ask your “first customers” for a testimonial of their experience.
To make these opinions known, in addition to your value proposition, services, and products, you must create a web page with all this information. This is extremely important since today there are great possibilities to earn money online, so your presence there is key.
What should your website have?
Your website should include the work you’ve done so far and all the elements that give you credibility abroad, to attract new customers and show them that you know what you’re talking about. This page should be simple and honest.
6. The importance of outsourcing business activities
Have you ever wondered how much an hour of your time is worth? When you have this figure clear in your head, it is much easier to decide whether to hire someone to do a specific job in a much faster and better way.
When you are learning how to start a business, many activities, tasks, and commitments will arise that demand your time in a less than optimal way; that is, they take away the most important resource to work on activities that make a difference.
So you must have an entrepreneurial mindset to outsource activities that are necessary for your business, but that is of little value so that you can do what you need to do.
When you go outsourcing you have two possibilities: The first is that you hire someone to carry out a specific activity that is not your strong point, or you can get a partner for the business that complements you.
This is the next point on how to start a business without quitting your current job.
7. Consider getting a partner for your business
Partnering with someone is a great way to reduce risk, gain access to additional resources, and spread the workload.
When you think about this possibility, the first candidates are usually your friends, so you should keep in mind a couple of tips so as not to ruin your friendship in the process of learning how to start a business.
Ask yourself what kind of partner you need:
The first step when looking for a partner is to define the needs and functions that this person must fulfill. Do you need help with ideas, marketing, accounting, or resources? Or what you need is a partner who only contributes money and does not participate too much?
Define the percentage of participation of the partner in the business:
Establishing limits on capital, participation, and functions early on is essential. The longer you wait, the more issues will get mixed up, and the harder it will be to determine who owns what.
This is one of the most common mistakes that entrepreneurs make in the initial stages of the business. So establish in advance who is in charge, of the holdings, and establish a written contract containing this information.
Someone must make the decisions:
Although the partners can have equal participation in the business, someone must make the decisions. And defining who does it must be established from the beginning.
How to avoid future inconveniences? Establish roles and areas of responsibility. Your partner will know his scope and the limits will be well defined when knowing how to start a business.
8. The importance of generating income quickly
If you have a way to do it, start making a profit while you’re still at your job. Test your prototype product, and see how much it sells or what services you can offer on a smaller scale before you go full market.
This practice will allow you to test the market, make better projections and measure your business properly before starting. For this, it is essential to learn how to sell even if you have no experience.
Additionally, making quick money before officially entering the market is crucial if you need investors. You need to demonstrate the potential earnings of your business to encourage people to invest and the best way to do this is by making money before you even start.
9. Set a date to quit your job
While you can learn how to start a business without quitting your job, that’s only sustainable at first. The time will come when you must decide to continue with your current job or venture out and start your business.
For this, you must set a date on which you will quit your job to dedicate yourself completely to your business and work decisively to grow your project.
The importance of setting a resignation date is that you must structure your life to achieve it. This means that you must prepare yourself financially, cut expenses, learn how to save money, and stabilize your income while you change businesses.
Another less drastic possibility is to propose to your company or boss to work part-time before resigning, so you can balance loads without losing focus on the business. If these do not agree.
10. Study, train, and learn everything you need
One of the most important aspects when it comes to knowing how to start a business is your ability to learn.
Before quitting your job, you must know in depth how the industry you want to enter works, you must keep in mind the number of innovative businesses that open every day in your field, know your competitors, and the techniques, methodologies, and practices that they develop in your field.
For this, you can invest time and resources in books that teach you everything from how to start a business, to billing techniques, growth, and digital marketing strategies to publicize your company.
In the same way, you can attend courses, face-to-face events, or online seminars where some important topic for your field is discussed. Remember that your ability to learn largely defines the success of your business.
Guide: A 24-hour plan to start a business from your job
How could you see the decision to learn how to start a business requires you to manage your time very well? And even more so when, initially, you will have “two projects” that are very demanding.
You will need to learn how to be more productive and use your time efficiently. Days off from your office work become days to work on your business. You will also have to learn to get up early and use your free time to work on your business idea.
For many people, the possibility of starting a business without giving up is unreasonable, however, success has a cost and this requires your effort, a little sacrifice, and very good management of your time.
Below we propose a plan of 7 spaces during your day, which is equivalent to 24 hours a week, that is, one day a week, and which will allow you to answer the question of how to create your company with little time.
Use these hours to dedicate yourself exclusively to your business idea:
1. Get up at 5 in the morning
Time: 1 hour
It all starts with the time you wake up. If you want to learn how to start a business you will have to first resolve your relationship with your alarm. There are two important things you need to understand:
- You can’t trust yourself at this time of day, you’ll somehow convince yourself to put off the alarm until you’re late for work.
- Second, the key is to establish a remote relationship with your alarm, this means that you place your phone or alarm as far away from you as possible, so you have to get up and do something about it.
Once you’ve gotten up to turn off your alarm, you’ll have completed the most important part of your first space: getting out of bed.
Due to the time (5 in the morning), you will not be able to call potential clients or contact suppliers, but you will have time to work on planning, developing your business idea, or designing your value proposition.
This time of day is characterized by being quiet, your neighbors are sleeping and there is not much noise, so you will have the necessary silence to think and plan. You can accompany this time of day with a coffee, I assure you that you will have a very good start to the day.
Important note: the time used in this first space is illustrative, many people get up at this time to go to work, so, depending on your schedule, get organized to get up an hour earlier.
2. Use the commute to your workplace and back home
Time: 1 hour (30 minutes there and 30 minutes back)
That time you spend going to your work in the morning, and in the afternoon returning home, you can use it to train and inform yourself on how to start a business.
Regardless of how you get around, whether it’s in your car, on public transportation, or foot, instead of listening to your favorite songs or stations, download an audiobook or podcast that is related to your industry.
If you use these downtimes to train yourself through some audio, beyond your favorite song, you can become an expert in your industry in a matter of months.
Remember that successful businesses and entrepreneurs are not only dedicated to doing, but they also need to learn and train. Theoretical knowledge is a perfect complement to your experience.
3. Separate space from your lunch hour
Time: 30 minutes
Until now you have been working on aspects of planning and learning; It’s time to make the most of the 30 minutes free on your lunch hour.
You usually have a lunch hour, so you have to be very practical with your food for this space to work for you.
You should use this time to call potential clients or suppliers, talk with your co-workers, and listen to what they have to tell you about your business idea.
You must maximize these minutes by relating, that is, meeting people who can help you in your business, who have something to offer you, competitors, clients, and many others.
They say that it is better to have friends than money: Successful people are usually very well connected.
4. Reserve the space you have at night after eating
Time: 1 hour
Perhaps this is one of the most difficult spaces of the day; you just got home from work, you just ate and maybe you did some exercise; and to be honest, the only thing that provokes is lying in bed, watching television, and resting.
These moments, like early mornings, are what differentiate successful people from other people. It is also difficult for them to get up early, they are also tired after arriving from work, they also want to go to bed…
Do you know what the only difference is? That they are willing to go over your excuses. Your desire to learn how to start a business and do something different is so much stronger than anything.
What can you do during this time of night?
Recap everything you achieved on this day, evaluate if you met your schedule, move forward on it, and start defining what you will do tomorrow.
Depending on the type of business you have, be it an online business; like having a blog, a specialized site, or any other physical business, think about how you can use this hour to work towards it.
For example, if you want to learn how to create a blog from scratch, you can use this hour to generate content, write articles, and make videos or audio. You can schedule your social networks for tomorrow.
If your case is to create a physical store, look for suppliers in different parts of the world, people in your community with whom you can work, potential customers, and competition.
Use these 60 minutes to do productive work, you’ve had time to plan and learn, now execute. Find out if that idea you have will have a market, start a market and competition investigation, and develop a business plan.
5. Get up at 6 a.m. on Saturdays
Time: between 2 and 3 hours
After advancing your business idea during your work week, and having shown that it is possible to start a business while you are working, you should put the finishing touch to your effort during the weekends.
You have two options:
The first is the one that you have possibly been practicing for the last months of your life. You get up at 9-10 in the morning, have breakfast, watch some TV, get up and have lunch, look for plans for your night and finally go out to party.
This plan is perfect if you don’t want to leave your comfort zone and expect to stay there indefinitely. Now, if your goal is different and what you are looking for is to be above average, you will have to look for a new option:
This alternative consists of getting up at 6 in the morning, taking advantage of the silence in your house, and getting to work on how to start a business.
This option implies that no matter what you did on Friday night, party or not, you will have to get up and work for your goals.
I recommend you use the same strategies of 5 in the morning to achieve it successfully. If you have partners, this may be a good time to meet with them and work, to go out and meet with different people interested in the business.
If your case is to open business premises, for example, this time can be used to go out and see points of sale; If you are going to open a marketing business, you can look for suppliers or partners for your operation. If it is a digital business, such as creating an online store, you can meet to develop business strategies.
One thing must be clear: What you do in each of these spaces will depend on the state of your business idea. If you are just starting, it is normal that you should first work on business planning and conception.
If, on the contrary, you have already been working on it for some time, the most normal thing will be that you find yourself in an execution stage.
Note: if you have to work on Saturday just open a three-hour slot in the afternoon or evening.
6. Get up at 7 a.m. on Sundays
Time: between 2 and 3 hours
Surely you will be tired of getting up early every day of the week, so on Sunday you can be a little more flexible and start your entrepreneurial day at 7 in the morning.
One of the things to do on a Sunday is to evaluate your process and make any necessary adjustments. Remember that you will hardly make progress if you do not give yourself the task of monitoring everything you have done.
Evaluation is just as important as execution, so don’t fall into the trap of running and running to feel busy, when what you need is to review your process.
Evaluate yourself along with your business idea, and how much progress you have had this week; If you have realized another different alternative to how you conceived your business, are you considering it within it? These types of questions are fundamental to progress.
Meet again with your partners and define action plans and the roles of each one. Each partner must be equally committed to moving this project forward, and getting up early on a Sunday to meet is proof of this.
These spaces shared with your partners are a good time to make important decisions since they are all together and have time to discuss each possibility or decision.
7. Set aside time on your Sunday night
Time: 30 minutes
Use this last moment of the week and Sunday to evaluate your progress. I am not referring to your progress with your business idea, but your process as an entrepreneur. Ask yourself the following questions:
What have you learned this week?
What did you do differently these days?
Did you meet other entrepreneurs like you?
What are your personal goals and how do you plan to achieve them?
You are an essential part of the success that your business can have, your capacity as an entrepreneur is put to the test every day, so you must be aware of your weaknesses and strengths and work on them.
This space can be complemented by books for entrepreneurs that motivate you. Use this time, which can be more than 30 minutes, to motivate yourself and recharge your batteries.
Finally, plan how you are going to work on your business idea during the week that begins, and what you must do to get closer to your entrepreneurial goal.
Ultimately, time is not a valid excuse for not starting a business. Your job and how demanding it is is not either.
Probably these 24 hours a week are a lot or a little, this will depend on you; the key is to recognize that it can be done, that you do have time, and that the reason for not doing it is in your mind and not in the resources.
If you have wondered how to start a business and you have a job, this guide with 10 steps to start working in your company from your job, added to the 7 spaces of 24 hours a week, will guarantee you to do it successfully.
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