Monday, October 20, 2008

$tarting Over

I saw a segment on this evening’s national news entitled, $tarting Over.
It was about people who were forced to start their own business after being laid off. The segment featured a woman who, after returning from maternity leave, was informed that her division was closing and everyone was getting laid off.

While the manner in which she was going about starting a business was not exactly the way I suggest in, How To Start A Business From Scratch…Without Having Any, it did point out what many people have overlooked about starting a business.

A lot of people, who are concerned about starting a business in an economic downturn because the business climate is bad or we are in a recession, fail to realize they may not have any choice. And, unfortunately, many do not prepare themselves for a day where they need to rely on their own skills to bring home the bacon.

Even if you think you have a sound and secure job, take the steps now to prepare yourself. Your house may never burn down or get hit by a tornado but you need home insurance. Consider this “Career Insurance.” At a minimum you will learn a lot about yourself, business and maybe decide to take the plunge regardless. Take the time now to do your homework so you will not be under pressure to rush through the process if you have to.

At least start by asking yourself what you are passionate about.
Close your eyes and ask yourself this question: If money were not an issue, and I could do any job I wanted, but I had to work, what would I do? There is a good chance this is what you are passionate about. When you are passionate about something, time and work do not matter. The price you pay in practicing and honing your skill is a labor of love, and time flies by.

You may say, “I am not passionate about anything.” I don’t buy it. You just might not want to admit out loud or to yourself because it just sounds like a hobby or an interest you have. That’s your source for your best ideas. When you have a strong interest in an area, you know it. You read the magazines and journals dedicated to that interest, and you could talk for hours about it. That’s passion. It will provide energy and motivation for your business.

I am not saying you have to be passionate to start a business. But it helps. You are going to spend a lot of your waking (and dreaming) hours in your business. It will much more enjoyable if those hours are spent doing something you like. And if you’re good at what you are passionate about, you are way ahead of the game.

There are a lot of other factors to consider when starting a business from scratch, but your passion will guide you through the tough choices.

At the conclusion of the TV news piece I was glad to see it was pointed out that Microsoft, Johnson and Johnson, Compaq, HP, and other successful companies were started during a recession. And they all started with one person’s passion.

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