I’m one of the leading career and resume consultants. I expect – you’re thinking of quitting your job, establishing your own business, and developing a exit strategy. You’ve definitely considered how you’ll make the shift financially, professionally, and personally. How will you make ends meet if you quit your full-time job? How much cash do you need in your bank account to feel comfortable taking “the leap”? Will you reduce your working hours, take up a part-time job, or resign entirely?
This is what I call your Exit Strategy, and it’s all about properly preparing your transition from one work and life stage to the next. Essentially, you’re departing one environment and entering another in what should be a rather seamless transition. Having a good strategy in place that meets your financial, professional, personal, and emotional needs can help you move smoothly. There’s a suitable procedure for uprooting a rotting tree, and there’s a process for uprooting your life, replacing out the bits that are no longer relevant so that fresh seeds can be planted and development may be inspired.
Depending on your objectives, priorities, present employment circumstances, and future career and entrepreneurial aspirations, an exit strategy will appear different for everyone. While a really successful and fool-proof departure strategy needs more than a simple checklist, begin by considering and applying these five key components.
Do A Performance Review
What are the most important talents you’ll need to succeed in your business, and do you have them? It’s one thing to be the most creative interior designer this side of the Hudson, but it’s quite another to run a successful business. Do you know how to read a profit and loss account and balance a budget? Are you an expert in e-commerce and running an online store?
Do you understand why, when, and how you should create an LLC or incorporate your company?You’re probably an expert at your main skill; otherwise, you wouldn’t be pursuing it as a profession. However, in order to manage your firm successfully and ethically, you’ll need to master a variety of additional skills in business operations, finance, accounting, and legal. Where can you go to learn new abilities if you don’t already have them? Consider online classes like Lynda.com, community colleges, trade associations, or even bartering.
Develop Your 12-Month Business Start-Up Plan
During your first year, your firm is likely to evolve and alter numerous times as you learn more about marketing, your target audience, your value proposition, and what works and what doesn’t in terms of strategy. Begin by drafting a 12-month start-up strategy, which you can incorporate into your business plan, outlining how you want your company to look financially, strategically, and in terms of growth at three, six, and twelve months. Nothing is written in stone, so make adjustments as your company develops and changes. However, you’ll need a foundation and blueprint to build from so you’re not sitting at your desk on day one of flying solo, unsure where to begin.
Get To Know Your Finances On A First-Name Basis
Now that you have a basic outline of your 12-month company start-up strategy, consider the following questions offered by career and resume consultants:
- How much money do you need to meet your personal needs each month?
- How much money do you think you’ll need each month to meet your business’s operating costs?
- What much of cash will you require for one-time start-up costs such as incorporation fees or new equipment?
Figure out what it looks like over the course of a year. Examine your choices and devise a strategy for obtaining the funds (part-time work, savings, company loan, VC/Angel capital, etc.). And, while it may seem bleak, you should answer this question assuming that your company would lose money in the first year. It’s not about being negative or thinking little; it’s about strategic preparation.
You can’t expect to make a profit in the first month of starting a new firm. Good for you if you start making money right away (like I did…)! However, keep in mind that a business’s typical start-up time ranges from 12 to 36 months. It’s critical that you have financial protection for at least the first year. Instead of stressing about where your money will come from at the end of the month, you should focus on building your business and brand and experimenting with new marketing methods.
Once you’ve figured out how and when you’ll be able to raise the funds to keep yourself and your business afloat for the first year, you can work backward to figure out when you’ll be able to leave – whether that means quitting your full-time job, reducing your hours, obtaining funding, or some other strategy.
Pool Your Resources Into Your Sustainability Dream Team
Who do you have in your life who is completely behind you in your new endeavour? Does your best friend or significant other constantly remind you of how fantastic your ideas are and how to persevere in the face of sceptics and adversity? Perhaps you have a mentor, coach, or therapist who helps you stay grounded, focused, and motivated to achieve. And you wouldn’t be able to accomplish it without the financial wizardry of Franz, your incredibly dependable accountant. Consider who cheers you on, who adds value to and supports what you’re attempting to do, and what role they play within that group of supporters.
Do A Little Smart Goal Setting
As I previously stated, your business will develop and evolve dramatically in its first year, if not several years. But first, set short- and long-term growth goals, whether it’s a monetary goal, a brand-building goal, or any other measurable measurement that lets you track what’s working and what’s not. By the end of six months, you could wish to have 500 subscribers on your email list. And by the third month, you’d want to have your first customer. You want to have 40 repeat clients with whom you’ve developed a strong relationship and loyalty by the end of the year. Use the SMART goal-setting tool to help you get started on your exit strategy. It will be tough to determine if you are on track and re-strategize if you do not have a dependable mechanism for evaluating what is and is not working.
One of the first and most critical stages in making the move from employee to entrepreneur is to have a good exit strategy in place. By determining what you will require financially, emotionally, psychologically, and tactically in a realistic manner (don’t do yourself a favour and work on minimums – overestimate), you are laying the groundwork for a successful transition and a long-term business!
This is your exit strategy. It is all about correctly arranging your transition from one career and life stage to the next. Essentially, you’re leaving one setting and entering another in what should be a rather smooth transition. Having a sound strategy in place is crucial. It should satisfy your financial, professional, personal, and emotional needs will help you move forward easily. There is an appropriate strategy for uprooting a rotten tree, and there is a system for uprooting your life. Replacing out the portions that are no longer relevant. Fresh seeds can be planted and progress may be stimulated.
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