Becoming your own boss is, at its best, liberating and extremely rewarding. Having more control over what work you do, when you work and who you work for is great, but making it pay involves a lot of planning. Once you have the right small business idea, there are a few tasks you need to complete before you can even think about being self-employed.
The first one is leaving your current job or, at the very least, reducing your hours to make room for new business time. For the former, make sure your resignation letter is as diplomatic and respectful as possible and make sure you work your full notice period. For the latter, explain why, but you can only ask for reduced hours if you’ve been with the same employer for at least six months.
Cash In The Bank
For those first few months, you need enough funds to pay the bills. If business is slow, having some savings or a part-time job to tide you over will make a big difference. It’s also worth finding out what financial products are on offer to self-employed people such as loans, grants and even credit cards.
There are a number of banks, building societies and loan providers who may turn their noses up at self-employed people. Companies such as Saffron Building Society could be worth contacting if, say, you’re looking to take out a mortgage but don’t meet others’ strict criteria. Reading the small print is essential.
Home Or Away
Next, you’ll need the perfect workspace, one where you can do the paperwork, contact clients and sell your products or services. For many self-employed people, working from home is a viable and cost-effective option. It saves a small fortune on expenses such as internet connectivity, office rent and travel, but it only works for certain professions such as web design or accountancy.
If you need to move away from a home based business to a more professional setting, there are a few choices. Renting at a shared office space can be done for under £100 per month in most cities outside of London, with Wi-Fi, a mailbox and refreshments included in the price. However, for more control, a dedicated office space is needed, where you can accommodate employees and the like.
Finally, there is so much paperwork that needs filling in. Registering as self-employed is the first step. Then, you need to set up a bank account, buy some stationery and paperwork and have a marketing strategy. This can be done pretty easily by yourself through social media and by setting up a free website on a site like Joomla, WordPress or Wix.
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