You’re ready to turn that idea you’ve been kicking around into a full-fledged business. You have the plan, the vision, and metrics for success all place. There’s just one problem:
You already have a full-time job.
Ideally, you would just quit your full-time job immediately and exclusively pursue your startup. Unfortunately, that’s not a realistic plan for many of us. Whether you’re supporting a family or you have loans to pay back, you may have no choice but to keep your current job while you build a business.
It’s going to make things a bit more difficult, but that certainly doesn’t mean it’s impossible.
Many businesses begin as side-jobs. Even huge successes like Craigslist and Trello. But in order to succeed, you’re going to have to work that much harder. You’ll need to be that much more focused.
That means you’ll need to start by…
Trimming the Fat
Anything in your life that’s consuming unnecessary amounts of time and money needs to go. It could be a little hobby or watching your favorite shows. Maybe you don’t get to go out for drinks after work. Maybe you have to pack lunch and make dinner at home.
Think of yourself on a boat that’s sinking. You need to throw everything off the boat that’s not essential so that you can stay afloat as long as possible.
Maintain Rest and Relationships
One of the worst things you can do to your body is deprive it of sleep. That extra hour of work you were able to put in at 1am is not worth the 3 hours of productivity you’ll likely lose from being tired the next day.
Whatever you do, make sure you stay well rested.
Additionally, don’t isolate yourself too much from those around you. Yes, your friends and family will see you less as you strive towards your goal. And if they truly care about you and believe in you, they’ll support that decision.
But you still need to maintain those relationships. Letting them slip away will bring down your mood, your motivation, and your ability to interact with people. Keep your important friendships healthy. Invest in them.
Just know when to draw the line.
Create a Timeline
If you’re serious about your business, then you’re planning on a day when you won’t need your full-time job anymore. Setup a timeline for this path towards your dream job. This will not only motivate you, but it will also prepare you for what’s a head.
You could also set various goals or checkpoints that aren’t necessarily bound to a specific length of time. For example, once your business is making x amount of dollars, you can step away from your job. Or maybe switch to a part-time job just to have some source of steady income.
Set a plan and execute.
Be Wise with Your Money
The good news is, you should be so busy between the two jobs that you don’t have time to spend money. The more money problems you have, the longer you’ll be working two jobs. Be especially conservative with your finances as you begin this journey. Start saving so that you can afford to quit your day job sooner rather than later.
All this budgeting isn’t just good for your personal life, but it should help you to budget better in your own business as well.
Never Forget Why You’re Doing It
When you first start the journey of launching a business, there’s a general excitement to it. Even if you have a fulltime job, you’ll find yourself going through the days with an added sense of purpose.
Sooner or later, however, that bold confidence will begin to wane. You’ll get tired and grow frustrated. Your fulltime job will feel more or more like a burden as you get glimpses of what your business could be.
You may be tempted to quit your day job too soon, leading to disastrous results in your personal life. Or you’ll give up on your dream of running your own business.
The problem is, if you have an urge to start a business, nothing will satisfy that impulse except actually starting a business. So keep moving forward, working the hours you need to, and giving proper attention to your startup, and eventually, you’ll see it through.
For more in-depth guidance on business strategy and metric development that goes beyond the cliché business tips for success, make sure to check out Business is ART, available now!