Being your own boss means the freedom to choose your work hours, set your goals, and ultimately, to determine your future. But you can’t just wake up one day and announce that you’re the boss and expect life to align itself around you. The path to owning your day is to create a successful side hustle that has the potential to become a fully-fledged business.
However, starting a business while still maintaining your 9-to-5 is an exhausting process and many experience burnouts within the first year. To avoid this, and to grow a successful service industry start-up, here are some tips to keep in mind.
1. Write Down All the Reasons Why Not to Do It
Consider every obstacle that’s in your way mentally, physically, and financially. Write down every reason why you shouldn’t throw away your spare time and weekends. Starting a service industry job on the side is going to be an arduous process until it pays off.
Be brutally honest with yourself and write down the reasons why not to start a side business like the ones below:
- You will have less of social life and less time for your family.
- Starting a service business costs money.
- Your business could fail, and all the time could be wasted.
- Even if you succeed, you might not make enough to live off it.
- When you overwork, you suffer from anxiety and depression.
- You’re not disciplined enough to hold down your job, eat healthily, stay in shape, and start a new business.
2. Come Up With Plans For Each Reason
Now that you’ve determined your weak spots, it’s time to create workarounds. If you’re prone to depression, then getting a hold of your social life, eating habits, and exercise regimens is a pre-requisite for success. Consider getting a subscription to pre-made meals delivered to your door. Or learn how to make healthy, easy-to-prepare snacks. Get a gym membership and hire a personal trainer to stay physically fit and motivated. Jot down some friends and family that you’d enjoy regularly calling for fifteen minutes each week.
Doing this kind of prep work for every possible failure is necessary before you lose your free time and become overwhelmed.
Despite the lack of free time, there’s one thing that successful entrepreneurs do. They continue to learn. Whether you want to read about the best business practices or how successful start-ups succeeded, there are books ranging on every topic. And don’t be afraid to read books on what you’re supposedly an expert of. If your company installs HVAC systems, check out as many HVAC books as you can, for example. Become the expert’s expert on your topic.
4. Determine What Can Be Automated or Outsourced
When starting a side hustle, you’ll notice there’s an abundance of redundant work. Some of it is legal, some marketing and outreach. If you plan to grow this into a successful business, nothing can be overlooked. This means all that time-consuming work lands on you.
Consider ways to save time by automating and outsourcing:
- Marketing – Virtual assistants and college students looking for school credit are great resources to utilize when setting up your marketing strategy.
- Scheduling – Find service industry management apps that help you coordinate your business.
- Invoicing – Set up automatic payment methods and use tax software to keep on top of your finances.
5. Understand Your Financial Situation
If your job affords you extra money to set aside for your new business, that’s great! If not, you’re going to have to get strategic and read finance books. Be wary of sinking your savings into a new business. Keep in mind that companies fail at an exceptional rate. Hedge your bets and seek out financing where available. Determine the minimum you need to get started and then invest intelligently.
6. Create Space to Succeed
Juggling an additional project will become mentally taxing. During the creation phase, you might find you have the time and brain capacity to do both with ease. But as your side hustle starts to include invoicing and taxes and customer relations, kiss that mental fortitude goodbye. To combat this before it arises, try to carve out a space that is dedicated to working.
Not only will this place become sacred for your business, but you will know where every detail is. You don’t want to be digging through electricity bills and grocery lists to figure out how much a customer owes you. Keep your home life in your home and your work life in your workspace.
Keep a Level Head
Juggling work and a growing side business won’t be easy, but the potential for becoming your own boss is worth it. When you start out, there will be times you feel overwhelmed. That might mean you need to take a weekend off and relax at the beach. Or it means you need to spend more time with family and friends. Whatever it is, be sure to keep a level head and use your resources to stay focused on the long-term goals.