4 reasons why you are in business for yourself (in case you forgot)
Today’s challenges for small business owners are immense.
Aside from COVID-19 (which, of course, is hard to put aside), there are challenges from the market as well as the government. There is competition, pressure to raise wages, problems finding and retaining qualified employees, an endless array of government employment rules, tax complexity, supply chain issues, adaptation. to new technologies, and more and more.
So why are you in business? This may be a question many small business owners are asking themselves now.
Here are some answers you might relate to.
1. Have independence
Having your own business means that you don’t depend on another business or an individual for your livelihood. You cannot be fired. We can’t tell you when to work. The foundation of the odd-job economy is this independence. And the pandemic has created a new generation of home-based entrepreneurs, full or part-time.
Of course, with independence comes responsibility. It’s all on you. You have to work with others (employees, customers, suppliers) so that you are not as “independent” as you might think. And being a small business owner usually means working more hours than if you were someone else’s employee. SCORE reported as various surveys show, an old Gallup poll found that 39% of owners worked more than 60 hours. There are no recent statistics, but I’m sure many owners still feel ‘plugged in’ (thinking about work, responding to emails, etc.).
2. Be challenged
Problem solving is what drives some people to go into business. They have solutions and want to market them. For others, it’s the daily challenges and the adrenaline rush that they bring. Like puzzle solvers, small business owners continually find ways to deal with day-to-day problems. Because a lot of problems are unknown until they arise, every day is different and brings new challenges. A professional acquaintance used to answer my question: “How are you?” With “never boring”.
Contractor even has a Podcast on problem solvers.
3. Make money
Whether you’re in business to replace a paycheck or aiming to become the next IPO, obviously you’re in business to make money. Being profitable is nothing to be ashamed of. However, if making money is the only reason you’re in business, it probably won’t support you. Making money is just the way you can achieve your goals … with the other answers suggested in this blog.
4. Serve a cause
Some companies are launched as an engine for social change. For example, Bomba, the sock company, gives homeless shelters a pair of socks for every pair it sells to consumers. Other companies operate within the confines of climate change doctrines. They minimize their carbon footprint and adopt other “green” policies.
Serving a cause is not mutually exclusive with other reasons for doing business. For example, you can allocate a percentage of the profits to causes while still being independent, challenged, and earning money.
With today’s growing challenges, it is important for you to answer the question “why are you in business?” “
It may be a good idea to revisit your business mission statement (assuming you have one). It may remind you of your answer. My company’s mission statement is simply to “make entrepreneurs smarter” and that’s what motivates me every day.
Barbara Weltman is the founder of Big Ideas for Small Business, Inc., which publishes Idée du jour. She is the author of JK Lasser Small Business Taxes 2020 and other books that educate the small business community about tax, financial and legal information they should know.