Ditching Your Training Wheels: When to Quit Your Day Job

Wouldn’t it be nice to quit your day job to start a business? Maybe you’re already working on your new endeavour as a side-hustle, but you dream of running it full-time. It seems attractive to just quit, but some of the most successful entrepreneurs kept their jobs for a while before diving in full-time.

Daymond John, creator of FUBU, waited tables at Red Lobster until his clothing brand took off. Phil Knight, founder of Nike, remained an accountant for a few years before working full-time on his company. It’s a good idea to avoid all headache and misery that comes with worrying about how to pay the bills next month if possible. Avoid the needless stress by following these tips.

Discipline Comes First

If you don’t already follow a schedule for working on your business consistently, there’s no guarantee you’ll suddenly adopt a high level of discipline once you decide to work on it full-time. Chip away at your side project every day, preferably at the same time each day and make it a habit. Self-motivation is required to build that foundation and work ethic.

Patience Is Key

If you’re low on funds and things aren’t going as planned for your fledgling business, you can make hasty decisions. Staying at your day job will prevent you from making choices out of desperation. Work steadily on your idea, test out different business models and product ideas. Not only will you spare yourself the stress, but your pockets won’t have to suffer either.

If your business is making little to no profit, don’t even think about quitting your job any time soon. It can take time to just break even. The flow of customers or clients usually fluctuates for a while before gaining traction. Think about how long it might take to make profit and how much money you’ll need to get there.

Prepare for Worst-Case Scenarios

Grow savings for your business and have more than you think you’ll need in case your plans go awry or fail completely. Make sure you have enough for product or service testing. Keep your personal savings separate and continue putting money away for personal expenses.

When It’s Finally Time

Consider taking a part-time job or reducing your hours at work if you want to spend more time on your business. But if it’s already making as much or more than you earn at your day job, then it’s time to quit. If the hours and energy spent at work are preventing you from meeting the demands of your business, it’s time to put more focus on growing your enterprise.

You should also be leaving your day job with a detailed business plan and marketing strategy that you’re confident will succeed.

Quitting your job can be scary but taking the risk to pursue your goals is worth it. You want to live your best life, not be stuck in a job or a life situation you aren’t satisfied with. Make the jump without fear.


Joséphine Mwanvua | Contributing Writer



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