Time to fly?
August 15, 2012 1:39 PM   Subscribe

How did you - or someone you know - decide the time had come to get your own business off the ground?
posted by st starseed to Work & Money (11 answers total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
The moment I had saved up living enough expenses that would allow me to support myself for one year, even if work didn't take off. I'm now in my second year.
posted by mochapickle at 1:51 PM on August 15, 2012 [1 favorite]

reverse living & enough
posted by mochapickle at 1:52 PM on August 15, 2012

Ditto mochapickle, with the added factor of being completely disgusted with the place where I was working at the time. I'm now three years in.
posted by deadmessenger at 1:58 PM on August 15, 2012

I had saved up a cushion of money, didn't have kids yet, and also found myself in a perfect position to take advantage of my plans (one job was ending and I was introduced to someone who could help my business start). I knew that in 10 years I likely have kids, etc.. so "now" was the right time.
posted by bottlebrushtree at 2:05 PM on August 15, 2012

"Decided" as in "I did it but it wasn't sustainable for very long":
Started that business as a university business because I had friends, we had talent, and we saw huge demand for what we were doing.

"Decided" as in "arrived at my new career-making business" (6 years ago, still doing it):
I had free rent for the foreseeable future, a wife who had a full-time job, no possibility of having kids anytime soon, and a local B2B business owner who was excited to work together on a bunch of projects she had piling up. The previous business I had worked at as an employee was awful.
posted by circular at 2:27 PM on August 15, 2012

(oops, that should be "as a university student")
posted by circular at 2:30 PM on August 15, 2012

As Mochapickle! I've blogged about exactly how I did it - memail me if you'd like the link ...
posted by LyzzyBee at 3:26 PM on August 15, 2012

I´m currently in the same situation as I am considering leaving my job to form my own business. I have a good job environment actually and I love the people I work with but I also realize that I will never get to do anything interesting there. I've noticed over the last 2 years that while the company won't give me a budget to create something in-house, they are happy to pay any number of outside vendors to do the kinds of things I would like to do in-house. (I do technical project management, development, analysis, etc). I am also keeping in mind that my boss submitted a report to our director saying that in order to keep up with the demand we would need to hire 6 additional full time employees. The director said, sorry, hiring is frozen, find freelancers.

Basically in my case its a long term assesment of supply and demand and I know that the equation is heavily in my favor at the moment.

The thing I am doing at the moment is also putting myself in touch with all the contacts i've made in my industry (since I am the one managing all our outside vendors) and felt them out regarding my plan to see if they could use my services. While it's no guarantee, my aim is to start out with at least a well defined plan on who I could potentially get business from on day one.

I think most people would agree that the process needs to be a well calculated assessment of demand, risk and strategy and shouldn't be done on a whim.
posted by postergeist at 4:19 PM on August 15, 2012

The company I had been working for was slowly imploding after a badly-handled IPO. Someone offered me a freelance gig completely out of the blue. I took the gig. Later on someone offered me another one. I took that one too. After a couple years of this I realized I was running a business.
posted by ook at 5:04 PM on August 15, 2012

I'd been doing freelance work on the side for about 2 years, making enough to pay some bills and have a comfortable cushion. I had a job at a place that was sinking faster than the Titanic, so I knew what was coming and started taking on more freelance gigs for the inevitable layoff. The axe fell and by the end of the week, I was so busy with freelance work that I didn't have time to look for full-time jobs and it was annoying when I had to fly out for interviews because I'M GETTING WORK DONE HERE. And then when I was doing interviews I couldn't help but think things like, "So you're offering me about the same as I make now but it's not a job I can do from my porch?"

Been almost a year of doing it full-time.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 6:09 PM on August 15, 2012

I had three years experience in the industry and I felt I could do some things better than other companies. I took over a small company from someone else - basically I paid him as a consultant while he turned his clients over to me. I've been able to get quite a few clients myself and am doing well.
posted by Melsky at 3:30 AM on August 17, 2012

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