One of the biggest misconceptions about starting a business is that you have to be 100% ready, have all your ducks in a row (website, bookkeeping, etc.), and have a “start” date. The truth is, if you wait to do all those things, opportunities may pass you by and you will never get another chance.
When I started my consulting business, I was unprepared. I didn’t have any legal paperwork prepared, I had no accounting system, and I was far from “business” ready. What I did have was the drive and passion to make it work. I have been preparing for it for years by building my personal brand with hopes that one day I will be my own boss.
The opportunity came last year when I parted ways with my then employer. My initial response was to look for a new job, however, nothing out there felt right or was the natural next step. That’s because deep down inside I knew that the next step was solopreneurship and it was either now or never.
I chose now and immediately switched gears from looking for an employer to looking for clients. In no time, thanks to an amazing network of friends and acquaintances, I had numerous requests for proposals. Did I know how to create one? Nope! Did I know how to price myself? Nope! Did I figure it out? Of course! Years of working in a role that allowed me to touch every aspect of a large corporation paid off big time, from intuitively knowing what to include in a proposal to knowing how to figure out the market value of my services.
If I had waited to figure out how to do something before getting out there, I would have missed out on all of the amazing opportunities that came my way and the opportunity to work with my current roster of amazing clients.
If what you’re doing or want to do is meant to be, you will figure out how to get it done, regardless if you know how to or not. Tap into your resources, research the hell out of what you need to do, do your homework, ask lots of questions and trust your gut.
What I’m trying to say, is say yes now and figure it out as you go along.
One of my favorite quotes is, “Luck is when opportunity meets preparation.” I did not realize how prepared I was to make the jump into solopreneurship until I woke up one day and just leaped, sowing my parachute as I went.
I’m still sowing my parachute. Today I filed for my LLC, almost a year since I started this journey full time. I’m also learning the hard way that I should have kept better track of my expenses and mileage for tax purposes (thank goodness, throughout the year, I threw all of my receipts into a box, put 30% of my earnings aside, and kept a detailed calendar!). There’s a lot of things that I have left to check off the “starting a business” check list but that has not stopped me from doing what I love and making a living out of it.
Rome was not built in a day, and neither will your business.
Go out there and do good work.