In a nutshell

  • Many start-ups begin from people doing something they already know and love
  • There are options available that have low start-up costs
  • It is possible to start a business without leaving your current job
  • Explore the option of securing start-up funding
Transmit Group’s Richard Myers

How do I… Start my own business without risking everything?

For many, financial concerns can make becoming self employed feel like a pipe dream. But according to Transmit Group’s Richard Myers, this shouldn't be the case. He explains to us why you don’t need to risk your whole income to start your own business. 

It’s entirely possible to explore becoming self-employed, either while still working full or part-time and/or by turning your hobby or skill set into a full-time business. And better still, there are thousands of potential business options available that have really low start-up costs, meaning you don’t need to take a huge risk with your, and your family’s, financial future.

When 10,000 people were asked ‘what puts you off being self-employed?’, 47% of people responded with ‘a lack of stable income’. Granted, if you want to found a business that will need your full-time attention - such as a business that will serve its customers strictly on a 9-5 or early-late basis - starting your business while holding down a full-time job might not work.

But the vast majority of us would want to become self-employed by doing something we already know and love, such as turning a hobby or skill-set into a sustainable business that gives us the freedom to generate our own income and choose the hours we work.

If this is exactly the type of business that you want to start, then chances are you can absolutely start your business without leaving your job.

Keeping your current job, even by cutting down your hours, can give you the best of both worlds to try out becoming your own boss while ensuring that you stay financially secure.

Many of Transmit Start-Ups’ loan recipients opt for this approach when they first embark on their entrepreneurial journey. It can make the whole idea of becoming your own boss much less overwhelming and give you more confidence in your business idea too, as you can secure the demand you need before leaving your job to pursue the dream on a full-time basis.

And securing funding to get going need not be stressful, either. You might think that in order to secure start-up funding, you need to have the next groundbreaking idea, a history of sales or proof of future orders such as a long waiting list of customers all clamouring for whatever it is you plan on offering.

In reality, most of us that want to go self-employed just need a small amount of funding to get started. This might be cash for items such as:

  • A vehicle
  • Equipment (such as health & beauty or fitness equipment, labourer tools, computers or technical equipment etc.)
  • Stock
  • Marketing materials
  • To cover your wages in the very early days

These examples are all very typical of the kind of things our entrepreneurs need finance for, and importantly, are all items that could be purchased by applying for a ‘Give it a go’ loan with us for between £500 - £5,000.

We’re not going to say it’s all plain sailing - starting up your business is hard work, but it can also be very rewarding too. According to a 2018 survey by the University of Sheffield, self-employed people are happier and more engaged with their jobs than those working in any other profession.

Ashleigh Smith
Article by Ashleigh Smith
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