A lot of people peruse through Instagram, watch YouTube and see all of these entrepreneurs crushing life. They think it “must be nice” they are entrepreneurs, the freedom they have, and all the material possessions they have. The problem here is, people on the internet tend to put up their highlight reals and not reality.
The reality is, business is really tough. You go through a lot more losses than wins. You do not start a business and instantly have fame, great income, the possessions you want, or a short work week. Instead, you typically make way less money than if you just got a job working 40 hours a week. Instead of working 40 hours a week, you actually work 60-80 hours a week. So, you are working more and getting paid less.
If things go well for you in business this often changes. It is usually around the 5 year mark where this starts to change. For me it was year 4, where putting in 60+ hour work weeks paid off and I finally started making respectable money, compared to my peers. In the first 3 full years of my business, I made less money than if I went and worked for minimum wage. The first 2 years I only had that income, so I was living off credit cards, buying and selling stuff on craigslist, income from the National Guard, and Sam. Then in year 3, I got a full time job managing a Machine shop to help progress my financial position, which I did on top of the group home business.
Besides many hours and little pay, there was also the risk of starting a business. Especially a 24/7 service business, where we took care of disabled adults. There was a lot of criticism from family and friends for starting a business. A lot of people who do not believe in you or support your decisions. There are endless amounts of challenging days. Meeting with clients, making sure you are profiting, so you can continue to grow the company. Not getting enough residents/sales. Covering bills out of savings, credit cards, and asking employees to not cash their checks on pay day, until we got paid, because the company ran out of money. Then reinvesting all of our money to grow the company or to pay bills.
So, even after all of that fun, I decided to sell my company, and start a new one lol. I think small businesses are great and I encourage people to do so, if that is their passion or what they want to do. However, I want them to be aware of the harsh realities. It is not always sunshine and rainbows. There are a lot more challenge days then celebratory days. You will engross haters/doubters. You will make less money at first. You will work longer hours and take on rolls you never thought you would do or know how to do. There is so, so, so much more I did not mention that you face as a small business owner starting out.
In all, I absolutely love it. I love the process, the stress, the challenge of it all. That is why I continue to be an entrepreneur and continue building. Let me know some of your challenges or experiences with starting or running a company in the comments, I would love to hear them.
Your Life Tutor