A job search under any circumstances is no treat - rewriting your resume at least a dozen times, job searching on the Internet day after day, and landing maybe two interviews for every hundred openings you dig up - but in a shaky economy it can be downright brutal. Business revenue declines, which causes companies to cut payroll, and then the lack of personnel drives frustrated customers away. It's a vicious cycle. But why get trapped in that rat race if you don't have to?
Starting a Business Trumps Job Searching
Looking for jobs can be a very shortsighted process. Long gone are the days when people worked at the same company for decades and retired with a nice pension. Since at least the 1980s, most professionals change jobs every three to four years, and it's usually the employer's choice rather than the worker's. Starting a business can be a scary proposition - especially if you come to the process with a lot of unanswered questions in your mind - but a job search can take up just as much time, effort and even capital. Besides, here is all you're left with at the end of that road - just another job that you might hold for five years, after which it's the same process all over again, except you're now five years older!
Four Reasons to Drop Job Searching for Entrepreneurship
If you have reached the stage in your career where you're earning a comfortable living as an executive or someone with skills honed over many years in business, there are many strikes against you on the job search front. Here are four reasons why starting a business may better serve your long-term financial goals:
• Experience - Few companies hire at a senior level and expect people to come aboard in an entry- or mid-level role. In your own business, you're immediately at the top of the heap, both in earning power and in the decision-making process.
• Location - The job you want may not exist in the city where you live, which either forces you to relocate or else downgrade your desires. Starting a business allows you to work wherever you wish.
• Security - While it's true that new businesses can fail, there are no guarantees these days that a 50-year-old company will still exist next year, either. By starting a business, at least you have it within your personal power to be successful. If you're just another cog in the wheel, most of your own financial future is in the hands of others.
• Personality - The corporate world forces people to conform to a particular mindset. Not all of us are cut out to operate in this manner, but having a maverick-type personality is oftentimes a dead-ender when working for others. This is, however, the exact trait that makes a terrific entrepreneur.
Take These Steps to Start Your Business Search
Instead of looking for jobs, try these things instead. Make a list of your skills and experience. Seek out small business owners in your area and find out what skills they had before they took the leap - people love to give advice, after all. Check out various franchising opportunities on the Web, since buying a franchise is one of the easiest ways to own a business. Explore your local community college and sign up for a course in entrepreneurship. People just like you who took the plunge and never again looked back at the job searching process are usually the ones who teach these classes. If you're currently employed but nervous as to how long your job will be there, begin doing some freelance work or consider starting a business on the side. This will let you see if you're cut out for the entrepreneurial lifestyle, bring in some extra income, and provide a welcome landing spot if that pink slip shows up someday on your desk.
Where would you be today - both financially and emotionally - if you had started your own business the last time you were slogging through a job search?