Business insurance provider Hiscox quizzed over 300 SME-owners on what motivates them to drive their business forward. They found that:
• 39% are driven by wanting to provide financial stability for themselves and their family
• 25% are spurred on by personal ambition/the desire for recognition
• 20% are most motivated by the belief in their product/service
• 12% are fuelled by the desire for wealth
More than money?
The truth is, for many small businesses their motivation is probably a mixture of these things. The mundane need to pay mortgages and bills means most of us get up and work each morning when in an ideal world we’d perhaps rather be sleeping in and doing our own thing all day. Many people find they can eventually make more money through running their own business than by being an employee and this is a factor in them choosing to go it alone.
However, you usually need something else as well to maintain the energy, determination and creativity required to run a successful business. Often, as reflected in the survey, that’s a real passion for the product or service – many small business owners say they’re so excited about what they do, it doesn’t even feel like work anymore.
Some are also spurred on by a healthily competitive edge, always trying to do better than others, improve on their past performance and reach goals. For many, the major reward of having their own business is that both successes and failures and entirely down to them – a feeling you don’t get as much as an employee.
A lot of people choose to work for themselves for lifestyle reasons too and this also has a bearing on the type of work they choose to do. You may want to work from home, work less, travel or work around school hours, for example.
So, what drives you to run your own business? Is it mainly the money or would you do it anyway even if you could earn more as an employee? We’re really interested to know what motivates you to keep going.