Why should you choose to be self-employed?
“If you don’t build your dreams, someone will hire you to help build theirs”– Tony Allen Gaskins, Jr.
Self-employment is attractive as it empowers you and helps you build on your ideas. However, whether self-employment is right for you or not is another question. To take an informed decision, it is imperative to consider certain factors. Branch out on your own once you are confident that self-employment is for you. Here is what you must know before you decide to quit your job
1. What is self-employment?
Self-employment deals with running or managing a business by way of selling services or products for profit. Self-employment does not ensure a salary at the end of the month, you earn directly from the profits made by your business.
2. What are your options?
Various opportunities lay ahead for independent workers. However, everything comes with legal responsibilities too, depending on the kind of business you choose to adopt. You can consider:
- Freelance/Consultancy: This is a very casual mode of business wherein you use your expertise to earn from the comfort of your home. This model enables you to work with one or multiple clients at the same time depending on your capacity to deliver.
- Sole trader: This is a singularly managed business where the owner alone is liable for all debts and profits.
- Limited company: This model comes with its own set of obligations and legal rights. No matter how you register, private or public, the ownership gets divided into shares and are split amongst shareholders. The actual owner/s may or may not be involved in running such business.
- Partnership: This model is the same as that of sole trading. However, in a partnership business, two or more people are involved, who combine their expertise to run the business.
- Franchise: These are established businesses and owned by a franchisor. A franchisee owner gets the right to use the franchisor’s business model. This means that the franchisee manages a tried and tested business model with limited start-up costs and potentially less risk, but has to pay fees to the franchise owner.
Ten self-employed jobs that you may consider are:
- Fitness trainer
3. Self-employment is for you if you are successful in:
- Selling your skills
- Time management
4. What are the benefits of being self-employed?
- You create your own success
- You are your own boss
- You can work on flexible timings
- You have more control
- You can choose your team or work alone
5. Things to consider before you start on your own
You cannot use self-employment to avoid unemployment. You need to consciously choose to be self-employed. To make a well-directed choice, ask yourself the following questions:
- Can you afford to be on your own?
- What do you want to do? Are you qualified for the same?
- What are the available financial options (bank loans, grants, crowd funding, investors)?
- Where is the business plan?
- How will your decision affect your commitments and family life?
- Does your family support you?
- Do you know the legal formalities?
6. Here are some reasons why you should choose to be self-employed:
- You are the boss. This means that you are not imposed with duties, but you create your own. Being your own boss means that you inspire, push, at times wheedle yourself to set your own standards and work accordingly.
- You generally work from home. Working from the comfort of your home does not mean that you are not working hard. To ensure the quiet that you require for your work, engage a spare room or the corner of your library, or any viable space in your house/apartment into a formal working space. You save time that you might have to waste commuting. This setup offers you the flexibility to juggle both professional and personal obligations such as children and various family requirements.
- You avoid the rush hour and stress. Commuting to work while fighting the traffic snarls drains out most of your energy. In a self-employment set-up, you can avoid such stress.
- You manage your own salary. You save a lot by reduced expenses on fuel, travel cost, and health insurance.
- You can work from anywhere around the world. Be it your home, a local library, the park, or your favorite café, another country, etc., a self-employed person can choose the location if they feel tired of staying back at home.
- You can get into your jeans and sneakers and stop bothering about uncomfortable business suits and stifling ties. You need a formal attire only for interviews or business meetings.
- You can work on a dynamic work schedule. Suit your schedule according to your own routine.
- You have a better work-life balance. You do not have to work business hours and can spend time with your family and then complete your assignments later in the evening, and at your convenience.
- You can choose your clients. There is no one to coax you into working with people you are uncomfortable with. You choose your clients who suit your preferences and working style.
- You are left to yourself. It is easy to work in silence and solitude while avoiding the needless co-worker drama and trivial gossip.
If you would like to be self-employed you need to learn how to do it. The Level 3 Certificate in Business Start-up will teach you how to do so.