BEING YOUR OWN BOSS

Abstract:

Given our nation’s dwindling economy and recession-prone corporate climate, opting for own start-ups is fast emerging as a favourite forerunner among freshout-of-college MBA amateurs, we dig deep and find out why.

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The leisure of waking up to your own alarm, relishing every bite of that crisp breakfast bacon while browsing through the morning headlines. Now, follow this up with lazily strutting around, while soaking in the picturesque gorgeousness of your hilltop mansion as you head to lounge on a hammock overlooking the ocean - sounds like a chapter from ‘Holiday in paradise’? No! Apparently, it’s just another day at the office for Sir Richard Branson, Founder of the Multinational conglomerate, Virgin Groups.

So, now that you’ve had your daily dose of day dream, here’s some food for thought – what’s made such an enviable lifestyle possible for this world famous business mogul? Having settled for a salaried job or that gutsy leap he took to start his own enterprise?

Faced with the present economic puzzle where, though the job market seems to be swelling with openings, fresh-out-of-college management students are struggling, tossed between the idea whether to settle for that comfortable 9-5 white collared job or to risk it all and start their an own set-up. Every management fresher yearns for a dream head start to his/her corporate career. Having invested a solid chunk of moolah on an expensive B-school, heading out and rebelling is the last thing any corporate visionary wants to do. But, then again on the flipside, settling for nothing but the best mode of money-spinner and an enterprising corporate career is a criterion they don’t want to compromise on.

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Battling it out! Being employed vs. being the employer!

Given the dilemma, the question of the hour is - to lead or be led? But before we contemplate it any further, it is important for every management student and young business aspirant to understand that neither of this alternative is any lesser than the other. Whether it is a 9-5 occupation at a corporation or a self-owned enterprise, both would demand a solid amount of investment in terms of time, money and talent to excel. And, both being an employee a.k.a a team player will be as taxing as occupation as it would be to get your own business up and running. So, before stepping into the realm of self-realization and personal scrutiny , lets run a primary analysis to gauge the pros and cons of ‘being employed’ and ‘being the employer’? Let’s tabulate.

Being employed:

The fancy prospect of freedom, flexibility and liberty to earn more and limitlessly is the foremost promise that entices a young and restless management fresher. Though finding a salaried employee whose bank balance runs into millions would be difficult, it sure promises that ethereal peace of mind, lifestyle stability, a steady income and the promise of hassle-free retirement life. Being employed has perks such as paid holidays, carefree weekends, luxury of family time and personal space, all this without bearing the brunt of your own profit or loss or even the tension of where your next pay check is going to come from. For those who like to keep it safe and simple, finding a fulfilling 9-5 job would be the best bet. Scoring a resourceful job with an international firm also promises to put you on a well-established career map. It buys you that prominent place in the corporate society without having to slog for it.

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Building contacts and networking comes with this nature of job so, unlike a fresh-in-the-market entrepreneur, a salaried employee would not be required to be out in the sun and on the road sweating it out to build business, contacts and that desirable brand image that every management student eventually wants.

Being the employer:

But, luring back with a strong counter attack - being the king in your own jungle is what it’s like to be your own boss. And whether it is for a better package, a steady income, a career promotion or that giant corporate growth, the only co-worker you have to compete with will be you. Also, the prospect of multiplying your income in leaps and bounds is a definite game changer for many and hence makes it the more stimulating option of the two. When counting the blessings brought upon by being your own boss - flexibility of timing, space, deadlines, work ethics and approach patterns would emerge as the forerunners. One gets the liberty to execute their own business concepts and plans without any compromises. But such perks brings along concerns like, not being able to take that long leisure holiday or even the much-needed emergency sick leave. And while, a high-flying employee of a multinational corporation can leave meagre tasks like annual taxes to their legal folks and clearance of their messy desks to the office boys, a self employer will have to get down and dirty to clear their own clutter and manage their own papers. But, on the brighter side, for all those relentless dreamers out there, such minuscule sacrifices will vanish in a jiff.

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Drawing assurance from the fact that in today’s perilous state of world economy and recession prone state of affairs, when compared to their salaried counterpart being a self-reliant entrepreneur will be the only key to a secure, more reliant future.

Take a look inside, what’s your calling?

Now, that we have laid out the pros and cons of both the players involved. It’s time to reflect, reconsider and forge ahead. There are certain personal and professional parameters that can help a management fresher gauge their calling. Getting straight down to business, here are the few qualities that would help you decide if you’d make a good employee or an employer - if you are the kind who would rather lead than be led, are a cranky or irritable team player, the kind who would want more room for your ideas to flourish than settle for someone else’s. If you are the sort who can draw your own schedule and religiously stick to it and have that strong sense of resources, talent and time management then you are cut out to break out on your own. But, at the very prelude, the extremely essential aspect that every aspiring entrepreneur needs to understand is the fact that one shouldn’t choose to be an entrepreneur just for the sake of minting money. Unlike a salaried employee, whose commitment extends only till abiding by the rules laid out by their organisation and their respective job profiles, an enterprising entrepreneur on the other hand has to be equipped to face challenges head-on and alone. Being prepared to fall and fail over and over again comes with the entrepreneurial territory. And ultimately, being driven by perseverance and using a failure as an opportunity to invent solution is what will make for a true businessman.

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Taking the leap!

Now, that you have found your calling and have chosen to answer it too, here’s what you should be doing next – plan, prepare and prosper. Create a realistic business plan based on your qualities and skill set. Choosing to fly solo will certainly be the biggest and most crucial decision of your life, so research thoroughly and study your local demography. Start by running extensive research on geographic demands using means like surveys, polls and one-onone interaction with your target audience. The first and foremost step in this journey is a strong sense of self- realisation – that is to believe in the brand called ‘you’. Once you have pulled yourself together, fixating on the right business format should follow suit. The main approach to starting your own enterprise is to evaluate your ideas and invest in them. Once you have zeroed in on your type and strategy of business, start planning your execution pattern. As mentioned earlier, understanding and analysing the needs and nature of the market you plan to launch your product in will be the crucial. Build a strong support system and lay out your finances so that at every step along the way you would be clear as to where you stand financially. Owning up to your circumstances and the determination to draw your own destiny will give you the ultimate nudge to take the plunge. So, move ahead and turn that idea into a business. And while you’re at it, remember, it is easy to start a business on any given day, but making it last is what makes a real-time businessman.

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Scoring that perfect head start?

As if zeroing in on a suitable sector of business wasn’t tough enough, you now have to rack your brain to make that best first impression. Starting a business can be easy but making it last is where the real deal lies. Scoring a perfect head start can determine your stance for you initial years in the market. According to business bigwigs there are four different routes a budding entrepreneur can choose to tread on – buying out an existing enterprise, starting an entirely new set-up, becoming a consultant and buying an already established franchise.

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Given your financial capacity and nature of business you are interested in one of the four should get you started on the right foot. Once you have finalised on which approach suits you best, get cracking – register your business name. This initial step will not only provide your commerce with a legal protection by shielding it from local competitors and unauthorised users but will also reflect your seriousness towards your venture. Every state and country has its own legal requirements and these laws must be strictly followed every step along the way to keep your business legit at all times. After completion of legal paperwork and formalities, work towards getting the right nature of license, permits as well as registrations in accordance to the government and tax authorities.

The final verdict

So, here’s to all the aspiring entrepreneurs out there - make peace with the fact that flying solo will be a frightening first step. But be rest assured, the soaring flight that would follow will be an adrenaline rush like no other. So, as you choose to take the plunge to be wise in gathering wealth and wisdom, remember - it is any day better to master your own destiny and set your own alarm clock than be clockworked by someone else. For at the end of the day it is not about the zeros in your bank balance but the weight of the legacy you leave behind!

Good Luck and Godspeed!
BUDDING MANAGERS

MAY 2014 ISSUE


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Author:  buddingmanagers
Posted On:  Tuesday, 10 June, 2014 - 15:52

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