Someone emailed me earlier today and asked me how I knew I was ready to start a business. Because the email started with "Dear Sir/Madam", I'm guessing the person didn't seek me out based on any particular interest, but rather blind-copied a ton of email addresses and is now waiting to see if anyone will respond...
I considered replying that if the person was really interested, they would have at least cut and pasted my name into their template instead of sending a generic query to an unspecified group, but I decided to give the benefit of doubt to the person just this once...because it is the holiday season, right? Therefore...
I'm not sure what sort of business you are interested in or how you found my email address, but please don't sell it for money or suggest that I send my answers in with a money order made out to a Nigerian prince that you plan to return to me as soon as you have entry into the United States. I can only tell you what I know from my experiences and so these things may mean nothing...or everything...to you as you read on...
Start a business if...
- You are willing and able to consider your new business as your newest family member. You'll need to think about it constantly and give it everything it needs without resenting it.
- You can accept that you won't know what you are doing a lot of the time. Entrepreneurs who tell you they always know exactly what they are doing and they are super good at what they do are insane.
- You have to have a fairly good sense of your end game...if you are looking for retirement benefits and managed expectations, this isn't for you. If you don't think about pensions but rather think about just working until you own a private plane with your face on the side of it, well then...
- You are prepared to be happy, satisfied, confused, exhausted, and/or clueless. Or all of those things at the same time.
- You don't need a rigid routine to be okay. If you grocery shop at 10 am, fold laundry at 2 pm, answer emails from your bed, and stay up until the house is quiet to watch Netflix in peace and that makes you completely happy, this might work for you.
- You would rather work 16 hours in a row for little or no paycheck rather than attend a weekly leadership meeting wherein everyone shares their talking points about a topic that isn't even particularly interesting.
- You aren't a fan of 8 am start times, 5 pm stop times, one hour to eat lunch, or asking permission to eat a 30 minute lunch so you can leave 30 minutes early in the evening to pickup kids from daycare. Sigh.
- You are completely okay with being the CEO and also the person that shop-vacuums the floor, takes out the trash, and writes all the checks.
- You can accept that some people will think you are making a mess of your life by leaving the comfort of a predictable routine and steady paycheck.
- You thrive on the unexpected, the unpredictable, and the unknown.
I have no idea if you will find any of the above thoughts to be pertinent to your plans. If you think I'm completely wrong and have no clue what I'm talking about, you could be right. Take it for what it is worth.
PS...World Pie Domination