Making the transition from full-time employee to full-time entrepreneur is never easy.
But the hardest part isn’t the long hours or winning your first client – it’s the mindset change!
If you’re in this for the long run, then before you do anything else – before you even register your company – you have to shift from having an employee mindset to having one of a savvy businessperson.
Here’s how to make the change as painless as possible without losing yourself and your business in the process.
1. Get comfortable being in charge.
When you work for someone else, they’re the one responsible for most, if not all major business decisions.
Now you’re your own boss and you’re responsible for, well… everything!
It’s probably going to feel a bit scary at first, but as long as you’re ready to embrace the discomfort, you’ll soon wonder why you haven’t done this earlier!
Pro tip: Learn how to listen to your gut and make all your business decisions with confidence!
2. Time can be a friend – or a foe!
At a regular job, when 5 o’clock comes, you’re done for the day.
But when you’re running your own business, things are slightly different. There’s always that one more thing you need to take care of!
This means a couple of things:
1) You have all the freedom in the world to structure your day the way you want it and maximize your productivity while balancing it with the lifestyle you desire.
2) You must structure your day somehow so you’re able to differentiate between work time and downtime.
Any other way, and you’re heading down Burnout Lane!
Find the structure and routine that works best for you, your personality, and your business and do your best to stick to it.
3. Change is the only constant.
It’s way too easy to get comfortable at your average 9-to-5.
However, when you’re your own boss, every new day is a new adventure!
Chances are that no matter the industry, you’re going to have to keep learning pretty much nonstop. And usually, you have to learn as you go. This means you’re going to find yourself outside your comfort zone more often than not! Surrender to the process… every entrepreneur has gone through it, and continues to go through this. Myself included!
4. Mistakes are not for losers.
If you decide to take the entrepreneur’s path, there will be some bumps in the road. This is simply unavoidable.
You won’t always have all the answers and you will absolutely make some mistakes.
But that’s the beauty of it! It’s how you learn, grow, and adapt, as well as how you develop clear boundaries, preferences, and processes for working with clients and customers.
If you ask, I’m sure that 9 out of 10 entrepreneurs are going to confirm that they wouldn’t be who they are today if they hadn’t made at least a few mistakes when first starting out!
Personally, I’ve failed and stumbled quite spectacularly over the years (if I do say so myself)… everything from dropping the ball on a big project to making bad investments to hiring the wrong team! It will happen and you will grow from it.
5. Pricing is a strategy of its own!
This is one of the most common traps beginners fall into: they set prices that allow them to make as much as they used to make at their old job.
If financial independence is what you’re after, you’ve got to think like a business owner right from the start. And don’t forget, you’re covering all of your expenses yourself now (think insurance, retirement funds, taxes, etc.).
Who says you can’t earn more – double, triple – than what you used to make? That’s right, no one! You’re no longer trading time for money, you’re charging for the VALUE of what you provide, and that’s an important distinction to remember.
Pro tip: Struggle to set your prices? Find out what’s the difference between cost and value and see whether you’ve been selling yourself short!
6. It’s not about the destination…
…it’s about the journey (the most cliché thing ever but still true)!
Being an entrepreneur isn’t about reaching a final destination – it’s about constant growth and constantly looking for new opportunities.
That’s why it’s crucial to build a business you’re really passionate about. How else are you going to enjoy your journey?
What do you find the hardest when making the switch from a full-time employee to a savvy entrepreneur? Leave me a comment and let me know!