The hybrid entrepreneur lifestyle is taking off. Working a day job plus running a franchise or business opportunity on the side takes work and planning. It produces major benefits for people who tackle this fusion-approach to being a hybrid entrepreneur.
Avoiding the either-or method of owning a business is letting thousands of workers move with less risk and more confidence into full-time entrepreneurship.
Here is a look at how you can combine your dream of being your own boss with the solidity of your current day job.
According to a study done at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, hybrid entrepreneurs have a better track record. There is one third less probability of failing than people who quit their day job to go full time right away with their franchise or business opportunity.
And that’s not all. What researchers found is that people who slowly transitioned their sideline into a full-time business had “much higher rates of survival” compared to those that jumped into working full-time at their new business.
Want proof? Look at these hybrid entrepreneur experiences:
-Henry Ford. He worked at the Edison Illuminating Company while he was developing the technology and customer base for his Detroit Automobile Group.
According to the study, people who took the time to explore the feasibility of their idea had better success. They could test the waters, implement a range of strategies, all the while not worrying about their next meal.
When you take the hybrid approach, you can start with a small commitment at your kitchen table or laptop. You can figure out your working style, discover what skills you have and what you still need, then test the current demand for your product or service, all without going broke.
In a word–money. With a day job, you have the security of a regular paycheck. Whether you are single or are responsible for a family, you need money to pay your day-to-day expenses: rent, food clothing and transportation.
But you also need it for startup funding. Even family, and often especially family, will be reluctant to encourage your go-solo dreams. You need to come up with the cash in the beginning to make your ambition into a reality. When you’re getting a regular paycheck, you have access to funds that do just that.
The risk of starting franchises and business opportunities is very real. Especially if you invest your own capital, you can easily end up with zero savings and zero income if it goes belly up. But when you keep your day job, you have the confidence to nurse your new business along slowly and surely until it generates a full-time income for you and your family.
There is nothing wrong with hedging your bets by hanging on to your regular job. It is not a sell-out and it doesn’t show a lack of confidence or commitment. Quite the contrary. It indicates you are realistic and willing to put in the time over the long term to turn your passion for your own business into a solid moneymaker.
In addition, you can make the best use of the intangible resources from the company you work for full-time. These include advice from your boss and coworkers. You can even find colleagues to partner up with to help with specific needs in your new venture.
But it’s not easy. Full-time jobs mean just that. They take eight hours of your day with some commute time. You will usually have very little time and energy to devote to your new business in the evenings. But even an hour a day, done consistently, can result in amazing progress over time.
Plus, weekends can be devoted to your new business. This taps into family time and into your own recreation and social time. But with determination, you can balance your immediate desires with the benefits for long-term success. It takes will power, but most entrepreneurs say it is worth it.
To be successful, the hybrid entrepreneur way to entrepreneurship requires a plan. It takes time and effort to carry it through. But even before you start, you need to be clear about several factors.
What are the rules at your current job? Many companies have limits on the types of jobs that workers can be involved in. If you signed a non-compete agreement, you could lose your job if your sideline crosses that line. If you intend to market an idea or a product that you developed on your full-time job, you could be sued.
Can you handle stress? Working two jobs produces anxiety for almost any hybrid entrepreneur. You might get calls from customers and suppliers at your full-time job on your cell phone. You will need to fill orders, answer questions, work with clients and suppliers in the evening, after a full day of work and worries. Be clear about what is involved and how much stress you can handle.
Do you realize progress will be slow? Since you are working part time on your hybrid scheme, it will grow slowly. Don’t expect immediate rewards and riches.
Consistency and organization are your friends when you establish a side business. You stand the best chance of succeeding if you set up a schedule right from the beginning and stick to it.
Decide how much time you can realistically devote to it during the week and on the weekend. Factor in family time and your mental health. You need a social life and downtime to stay focused and energetic. Once you decide on how much time, stick to it.
Set goals to monitor progress and as a hybrid entrepreneur this shouldn’t be a hard task. You love to get organized don’t you? Re-visit them weekly so you can evaluate how you are doing. If you don’t know where you’re going, you won’t get there.
Get all the licenses and registrations you need. Consult an accountant and a lawyer about being a hybrid entrepreneur. Get the paperwork in order right from the beginning so you don’t have financial surprises down the road.
Set firm boundaries with the customers of your sideline business and let them know you are a hybrid entrepreneur. Getting calls at your full-time job is bad for you and for them. Set aside time in the evening to deal with emails and phone calls. Be strict with customers so they understand what is acceptable.
Are you ready for the hybrid entrepreneur lifestyle? Entrepreneurs who use the hybrid approach to owning their own business have an excellent chance to transforming it into a full-time, lucrative business. It is an excellent way to be your own boss, offering security, flexibility and long-term success.
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