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The Pros and Cons of Owning Your Own Business

Whether or not you run your own business, the idea sparks excitement and fear for many people, and for good reason. The prospect of getting out of the cycle of job hunting and into a business of your own choosing that can lead to achieving the life of your dreams is an amazing idea and a worthy aspiration. However, the magnitude of all the work, time, and money that goes into running a successful business can be reasonably terrifying. If starting or continuing your own business is on your mind, now is a great time to look at some of the potential pros and cons and what to do with them.

Keep Your Time in Mind

Pro: Unlike working for another company or person, managing your own business often leads to a lack of structured hours, which allows you the flexibility to best suit your life. 

Con: This lack of set hours means it can be easy to overwork yourself, which can result in eventual burnout. On the other hand, it could allow you to underwork and lead to cutting corners or not fully understanding the needs of your business.

Compromise: Try to schedule and manage your time, based on the needs of your business, while taking your health into consideration and maintaining some necessary work-life balance.

Value Your Name While Trading with It

Pro: One great aspect of calling the shots in a self-owned business is that quality control is set to your standards and becomes a key identifier for your brand.

Con: Without guidance or standards to meet, it can be hard to distinguish confidence from ignorance, or fend off the effects of imposter syndrome and debilitating self-doubt.

Compromise: Be consistently introspective, finding balance between forgiving your mistakes or shortcomings and acknowledging and pursuing your good ideas. It may also be beneficial to look at your competitors and learn from their successes and failures. 

Choose Your Staff Wisely

Pro: In hiring based on your own core values, you can build a healthy, productive, and sustainable workforce for your industry.

Con: Many hirings are based on referrals, and while this can invite great employees, this breeds nepotism if unchecked, and leads to substandard hiring, derailing productivity and motivation, and shutting out better, less connected candidates.

Compromise: Identify the skills and values in candidates that would be most beneficial to your business. After that, treat all new hires the same, whether they are with or without references. Make sure you look for desirable skills and personalities, above all other factors. 

Running your own business is bound to be full of trials and challenges that will test even the most thought-out and seemingly fool-proof business models. The industry you choose will dictate what you need to do to be successful, but these more general tips are core tenets in being able to manage a sustainable business of any size or type. 

Vanessa Huasasquiche | Contributing Writer

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