Are you through with working for someone else and ready to break out on your own, but aren’t sure if you’re the entrepreneurial type? The qualities you possess as a good worker can help you succeed when you become self-employed. Conducting a quick inventory of your skills and traits can help you decide if you’re ready to work for yourself.
1) Possess a Self-Starter Attitude
Successful entrepreneurs don’t wait for others to take charge. Being a self-starter means you take the initiative when it’s time to tackle new projects or complete routine tasks. Self-starters are also proactive and keen on finding new solutions for their businesses. Solid time-management skills are also necessary if you want your business to run efficiently.
Self-starters continue to be productive even when motivation wanes. Creating a business from scratch means you have a long to-do list, and not all of those tasks are going to be within your expertise or tasks you enjoy doing. A self-starter takes action on those tasks, even when motivation dips or tasks seem challenging. Since you don’t have a boss or co-workers setting expectations, you must rely on your own intrinsic motivation.
2) Expect Technical Aptitude
You don’t have to be a tech guru to work for yourself, but feeling comfortable with technology is important as an entrepreneur. Self-employed individuals often work online. Many industries use specialized software or apps that make the work easier. Learning those programs allows you to spend more time on your actual work and less time figuring out the software. Technology also simplifies the administrative aspects of running your business. For example, using QuickBooks Online helps you manage your expenses and track all of your business finances quickly, efficiently, and accurately.
3) Remote Working Capability
Many entrepreneurs start their businesses from home. With no commute, you save money on gas, parking, or public transportation. Also, with no dress code like you’d have in a traditional office, you can work in your pajamas if you want to. But the downside of working by yourself remotely is that you aren’t surrounded by colleagues whom you can bounce ideas off of. For some people, quiet, uninterrupted work time is ideal. Others may need time to adjust to this type of working environment.
You also need a space that’s just for work, and it’s ideal to carve out a corner of a room that you can call your own. Not only does having dedicated space help you work efficiently and stay organized, but it can also make it easier to claim a home office deduction on taxes. Create an organizational system within your home office space to keep yourself as productive as possible.
Instead of working from home, you might consider renting a desk in a co-working space. You get a dedicated space to work, and the benefit of interacting with other entrepreneurs and professionals. You can also join local professional groups for entrepreneurs or professional organizations in your industry to network with others who work from home.
4) Problem-Solving Skills
When you’re the boss, you are the sole person responsible for handling issues that arise. Being able to creatively overcome potential hurdles keeps your business running smoothly. As a self-employed person, you also need a workable business budget to help you stay on top of expenses and deal with unexpected issues that may pop up regularly when you run a business. Approaching those situations with a can-do attitude instead of avoiding them, helps you to find solutions more quickly. If you’re resourceful and creative when it comes to handling challenging situations, it may be another sign that you’re ready to be an entrepreneur.
4) Solid Communication Skills
One of the most important qualities of a talented worker is strong communication. Entrepreneurs need both written and oral communication skills to clearly communicate with clients and customers. How you use those skills depends largely on the type of small business you start. If, for example, you’re starting a work from home bookkeeping business, you would communicate with your clients to explain complex financial topics in easy-to-understand terms. You would also negotiate contracts and services, and teach your clients how to organize bookkeeping records. You might also use written communication through a blog or social media to gain new clients.
More than just expressing yourself, you need the ability to listen well to others. Listening to your clients gives you clues as to what they really want or need. Paying attention to criticism of your business tells you where you need to improve, while listening to praise shows you where you excel. Even listening to thought leaders in your industry can help you stay on top of industry trends.
5) Decision-Making Skills
Many people become entrepreneurs to gain the freedom to set their own rules for the company and decide how to proceed at every step. That freedom can open you up to a much greater potential for success and increased income compared to working for someone else’s company and earning a fixed income. If you find yourself wanting more creative freedom or more control over what you do and how you do it, being an entrepreneur may fit your personality well.
It’s important that you feel comfortable making decisions. Many successful entrepreneurs feel confident in their ability to assess a situation and make an executive decision. You don’t want to rush into decisions, but being able to make sound business decisions quickly keeps your business moving forward. A solid business plan is a good way to plan for the future, identify possible opportunities, and make decisions that support your vision. If you tend to let others make the decisions for you, practice being more decisive in your personal and work life. You can do this by researching all possible decisions, then comparing the pros and cons of each one.
6) Apply a Strong Work Ethic
What is good work ethic? Your work ethic is essentially the character you apply to your work. When you’re self-employed, sticking to strong morals in every business decision creates a positive company image. If you build your business around honesty, integrity, and accountability, you have a strong foundation for growth. Consumers want to support businesses with strong character. Part of work ethic is also working hard to get every job done. Before you grow and add employees, that may mean doing tasks that you don’t enjoy. A strong work ethic helps you push through to complete those tasks for the good of your business.
7) Benefits of Being Self-Employed
Feeling like you’ve ticked all the boxes as a successful self-employed candidate? Working for yourself comes with many perks.
Some of the benefits of being self-employed include:
- Flexibility regarding when and where you work
- Claiming business expenses on your taxes
- Being the sole decision-maker
- Unlimited earning potential
- Creating your company culture and values instead of conforming to someone else’s ideals
- Choosing your employees and the other companies or clients you work with
* Seeing the effects of your efforts
Whether you’re figuring out how to be a good business consultant, e-commerce store owner, or professional author, knowing your strengths helps you decide if the entrepreneurial lifestyle is right for you. You can also set yourself up for success with the right tools to make your job easier. The QuickBooks Self-Employed app helps freelancers, contractors, and sole proprietors track and manage business on the go. Sign Up Now & Save Up to 50%.