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Self Reliance: Getting Laid ... ah ... off!

So, you woke up this morning with a big smile on your face, only to have it wiped off by your boss telling you that you are part of today's big layoff.

Unless your last job made you independently wealthy, you're probably going to (1) panic, (2) take a quick look at the job openings in the newspaper, (3) look at monster.com, (4) panic, (5) go into the worry/drink/depression stage,and then, (6) tell everybody you know that you're starting your own business.

There's an old saying, "You never plan to fail, you just fail to plan".

So, who in their right mind would want to start a business during a recession?

Well, here are a few points, pro and con, to consider.

With the economy being in bad shape, you are probably more motivated to become self-reliant, and self-reliance is a good thing.

Since other businesses are also hurting in this type of economy, they are likely to be more flexible in their dealings than they might be during a booming economy. Loosely translated, this means that you might be able to garner business services, or startup inventory at bargain basement prices. For example: A trip to the local mall revealed that management was willing to wave the standard rental fee and make space available for a percentage of the gross. That vastly reduces the startup cost of a new retail business.

Another example of how startups can benefit from tough economic times (spotted in a local newspaper): "Office space for rent, normally $800/month ... best offer ... negotiable".

On the downside, since you've just been laid off, you'll have to be extra careful with all of your finances. This is where you really get to test your entrepreneurial skills. Credit is tight, making it very difficult to find outside capital to fund a startup.

As an aside, something to keep in mind ... being an entrepreneur is not for everyone. This can be especially true if you've just been laid off ... being an entrepreneur requires dedication, long hours, and extreme focus ... even if you have no other thoughts, cares, or concerns, it is often quite difficult to maintain the single minded focus necessary to take on an new startup business. This is certainly true when the bills start piling up! Don't expect to create a cash flow overnight. You will very quickly find that saying you are in business does not mean you ARE in business.

Don't fall for the "How I made a million dollars" schemes. Those folks usually make their money by SELLING a book or product. In reality, it is the book or product that is feeding their cash flow. Most of these schemes are a waste of money. Nothing works as well as starting with a good idea, creating a plan, and adding a lot of elbow grease. Time and effort are the keys to making a million dollars.

So, put your time to good use. If you are knowledgeable about something, start by writing about what you know. Collect information. Prepare and package information that people will find useful. Make information your first product. Become an authority. Use this to establish a customer base. As you begin to achieve some recognition, you will find yourself building an audience willing to accept additional products which you can use to broaden your scope and generate cash flow.

Permalink 05/03/09 04:53:00 am, by Bill Rosser Email , 556 words, Categories: Entrepreneurity ,