From Corporate Bigshot to Small Business Owner

More and more Americans are leaving the business world and starting their own business. While a few strike out to create a new industry or move into an entirely different field, most decide to start businesses in the industry they have worked in throughout their corporate career.

Creating a startup business in a field you know well offers many benefits. Friends, clients or even former contacts, can be recruited into co-founders, employees and customers. Familiarity with the market or manufacturing process, on-the-job training from their previous employers and even access to groups and associations in their industry are just a few of these clear advantages. But there are some drawbacks to having a corporate background before becoming your own boss, and some of them can be hard to overcome if you have spent a long time in corporate America.

Many people leave corporate America feeling unappreciated, unfulfilled, or even completely burnt out on working for someone else. They may hire mostly friends and family, maintain no routines or schedules, and favor “going with the flow” over planning and strategy. While it is your company, remember, it is a business, and you have to have your priorities straight. Sure you can forget about a dress code, take a vacation when you want or foster a more relaxed culture in your office, but don’t jump off the deep end too fast. Corporate America is a pretty successful concern and it might be wise to follow some of its lessons.

There’s something to be said for a nice steady paycheck, also. When you know how much your paycheck is, and that it will continue to come in the future, it eliminates a lot of financial planning, stress and management. With your own business, especially starting out or in the initial growth stage, you may have no income or even negative income for days, weeks, or even months. If you are not prepared for this it can be disruptive, and create issues in your family and community affairs. Plan accordingly, and prepare yourself for this change in your life and lifestyle.

Leaving the corporate world to start your own business is exciting, and can very well lead to improved incomes, lifestyle, and satisfaction from your work. But, if not properly planned and researched, it can have quite the opposite effect.