There’s no time like the present to start living your most meaningful life. For many, that means conducting a sober assessment of whether your current life and career are fulfilling you. If your look in the mirror leaves you feeling like there’s something missing, one option to seriously consider is transforming something you’re passionate about into a business.
When you start up a business built on a genuine passion, magical things can happen. You not only gain immense satisfaction from spending time doing what you love, but that same excitement naturally helps you excite and compel everyone you come across in business – your employees, financiers and customers included.
Want to join the hundreds of thousands of people who will start a business this year and embark on a life filled with activities that genuinely call to you? If so, here’s some advice:
Get in the Sandbox
First, get in your creative “sandbox” so you can establish a clear definition of just what it is you love doing. Force yourself to actually write down your description. There’s something about having to stare at the written words that helps you truly define and refine your thoughts. Next write down why that passion calls to you. Knowing the “why” helps you understand more of the lifestyle aspects and will enable you to craft two critical things: 1) The business model that’s most appealing, such as online, brick-and-mortar, home-based, part-time, etc., and 2) the role and responsibilities you would like to assume in the business.
Use a Role Model
Don’t be fooled into thinking that starting a business means you have to be completely original. As an example, there are a lot of wedding photographers out there who have businesses similar to thousands of others, and yet they thrive. So, instead of inventing a brand new business, consider copycatting another successful business owner who shares your same passion. Using that role model, you’ll likely be able to leapfrog past numerous, expensive experiments and naïve assumptions. This will save money and time and keep you in love with your work rather than frustrated. Take this concept to the next level by actually reaching out to the role model you identify and ask for direct advice and mentorship. If you’re in a non-competitive geographic market, this should work and help you immensely.
Create a Basic Plan
Knowing the details of how your business will function is fundamental to your eventual success. But that doesn’t mean you have to get sucked into a business planning black hole. There’s an expression commonly used among experienced entrepreneurs known as, “analysis paralysis.” Perhaps as a form of self-doubt or as reluctance to “pull the trigger,” some people assume that they have to map out every detail about the business in advance. The fact is, analysis in the earliest stages can only do so much, and it always pales in comparison to the value of gaining experience and real-world responses from the market. Sidestep the overly elaborate business plan. Know your basic financial performance expectations so there are no surprises. Make sure you have ideas in place about how you’re going to gain customers. Know the key people and resources you’ll require. But don’t over think it. Get into the market with your offering as quickly as possible.
Delegate and Offload
To keep your passion a passion and not a burden, it’s imperative that you stay true to yourself. That means delegating tasks and responsibilities that don’t “call to you” to other people. Identify employees, contractors or specialized vendors who are expert in providing such services. In this day and age, there’s always someone capable, willing, and passionate about those aspects of running your business that interest you the least. If interacting with clients is what you love, then by all means, offload the bookkeeping, website updates, inventory management, etc., to someone else. Even if delegating in this way costs more overall, you’ll gain more time to make more money by stirring up new opportunities for the business, and, very importantly, you’ll continue your romance with your daily work and be glad everyday to wake up and apply yourself to your passion.
Consider using StartupNation’s proven ste step-by-step formula used by hundreds of thousands to start a business: 10 Steps to Open for Business.