Everyone gets fed up with their nine-to-five from time to time.
Women in particular may face specific struggles within the workforce which eventually drive them to leave their jobs. For example, such reasons may include any combination of the following:
Lower pay: women in the United States make 93% of the salary of their male counterparts, for starters
- The desire to care for or start a family, which can be particularly tough in positions with little or no paid family leave
- A feeling of under-appreciation, either due to stagnant wages or an inability to move up the ranks
For women thinking about leaving their current gigs, it’s tempting to blaze your own path in pursuit of proper wages and employment on your own terms.
Unfortunately, starting you own venture is easier said than done. With all the gloom and doom surrounding budding businesses and freelance gigs, how can you make a realistic transition away from low-paying work?
The answer may come in the form of playing the “long game.”
That is, you shouldn’t be afraid to go it alone and start your own solo gig; however, you need to have a solid plan in place and starting sewing the seeds of your business sooner rather than later.
Simply put, you can’t hope to up and leave your current job at a moment’s notice and become a success story. Instead, take a more proactive approach to planning with the following tips as you focus on the long-term success of your career.
Create Your Audience Now
If you’re going into business for yourself, you’re going to need a hungry base of followers who will eventually become your customers online. This holds true regardless of your niche or industry: considering the power of influencer marketing, you need to position yourself as an expert in your field versus a new face in the crowd.
Therefore, you should strongly consider starting your own money-making blog that relates to your future company or documents your story as you transition out of a nine-to-five. Such a blog can eventually create leads for you, generate passive income and allow you to reap the SEO benefits down the road (as it may take months for your site to rank for keywords). Something as simple as a few articles detailing your expertise can go a long way when it comes time to seal the deal with your traffic.
Keep It Low-Key
Perhaps one of the biggest mistakes that women make when changing careers is wanting to tell everyone about their decision. However, you need to tread lightly when it comes to your personal and professional conversations (as well as your aforementioned blog) as not to let your current boss catch wind that you’re not sticking around for the long-haul.
In short, keep your decision hush-hush for as long as you possibly can to avoid losing your job or raising suspicions among your colleagues. Once your business model is proven and you know beyond a shadow of a doubt that you can land clients, then you can talk.
Start Saving Sooner Rather Than Later
Don’t make the mistake of putting yourself in a position where you can’t support yourself or have to settle for clients because you lack a nest egg. You should use your current gig as an opportunity to save money and budget toward your new venture. The more money saved, the more wiggle room you have with your budget and the less you need to stress about finances in the future.
Figure Out Your Rates and Budget Now
Another rookie mistake that newbie business owners make is simply not charging enough when it comes time to fly solo. You need to set high expectations and be realistic. Consider expenses such as self-employment taxes and healthcare, for example, when calculating your business’ budget and how much money you’re really earning. Given that many women leave professions due to low pay, don’t make your own venture a low-paying one.
There are a lot of factors that go into starting a successful solo business, but understand that you have what it takes to go it alone. Rather than allow yourself to be victim to stagnant wages, put yourself on the path to financial freedom as a female entrepreneur by planning now.