The essential guideline to holding down a day job while successfully building your own startup business is to remember the simple fact, that it’s your day job that is currently keeping you afloat not holding you back. The fear of the unknown is very real, but at the same time very liberating and exciting.
Here are six tips to help you juggle launching a startup while still keeping your day job.
1. View your day job differently
The salary you earn at your day job, is more than likely the revenue that is funding your startup. Many future entrepreneurs grapple with the risk of leaving a stable job and monthly income with a new and unpredictable project. By keeping your day job through the initial process of starting up your company, you minimize your own financial risk.This enables you to maintain your stable income while building for the future. Your day job is not what is holding you back, it is in essence allowing you to push forward.
2. Maintain good relations with your boss
While starting your own business may be exciting and a personal accomplishment for you, don’t forget you are still employed by someone else. Until the day you hand in your resignation, cutting the ‘corporate umbilical cord’, your responsibility to fulfill your daily duties should still be on top of your list. Don’t let your startup overshadow this. It’s also important to maintain good relationships with your employer, especially for the future. At the end of the day, it’s all about building a relationship based on trust between you and your boss. They may become your biggest cheerleader and go-to person when you need them the most– once you embark on your new business venture.
3. Keep Learning
You should view your day job as a place to learn the skills necessary for the management of a successful business.The things you’re doing at your day job can definitely help you and your startup. Viewing your job as a source of capital and a place of learning you will remember that It’s not standing in the way of your dream; your day job is actually fueling your dream, both financially and through experience.
4. Plan your days well
Patience, discipline and clear cut strategizing will aid you in managing what will probably be the busiest year (or few) of your life. Make sure you maximize on the time if you’re an early bird or a night owl– take advantage what works best for you. It’s been said that successful entrepreneurs manage their time, they don’t wish for more of it. Also make sure you take care of yourself, listen to your body and get the rest you need. Take some time out to be with family and friends. You can’t possibly give your everything to a new startup, if you are exhausted, run down or ill. You get the picture.
5. Find a partner
Often the free time that you have available outside of your day job is not enough for you to get your business up and running. Perhaps this would be the time to consider recruiting someone else to join your team and ease your load. This person would have to be like-minded and trustworthy but most importantly equally invested and skilled in the focus area of your start up. “Don’t be worried about someone stealing your idea. Its success lies in the execution. Your idea/product will only survive if you iterate it quickly. ” — Chris Altchek, PolicyMic
6. Using Technology to benefit you
We live in a world where technological developments, such as software and applications, are always available to aid us in our own business ventures. Make sure you make use of these. It’s after all what they are there for. Use the right tools to help you manage your time and business when you get started.There are countless options available to you. Take for instance, apps like TaskRabbit or Dropbox, keep you on track and hinder daily distractions so you can focus on the project at hand.
Ultimately there will come a time when you’ll need to take that leap and surrender your day job. As Richard Branson advises, deciding when to quit is a tough decision, but by preparing your “parachute,” you’ll be in a much better place when you do resign. ”Sooner or later you’ll have to give it a go full-time. If you don’t, you’ll spend the rest of your life wondering what might have been.”