Updated: Jul 13, 2020
I wrote and published a book earlier this year called Quit to Start - a book about quitting a job one day to start a business and pursue a dream. Then just a few weeks later, this coronavirus pandemic economic shock happened and suddenly quitting a job is the last thing anyone is thinking about.
And they’d be right, quitting a job to start a company right now would be highly irrational (in most cases). But this economic crisis is a wake-up call. Many of us barely remember the last recession and what it looks and feels like to not have job security. Right now, most of us are feeling and understanding the tenuous tie and lack of control we have to personal and household income.
A lot of us are scared, uncertain, and anxious. Some of us have already been laid off. Some of us are certain that layoffs or income reductions are coming. And others don’t feel the immediate threat but know that it could be just a few months away. We may come out of this economic crisis quickly or slowly or it could be a lot worse and different than we can even imagine.
So what should or can we do?
We all need to reassess and rethink. We need to look ahead and think about how we can sustain ourselves now or in the near future without 100% dependence on a job. It could be a side hustle or something more substantial. Now is the time to do the thinking and the research on what that would be and how to do it.
So, my biggest recommendation to you and everyone right now is begin the work to start identifying your marketable skill, talent, or strong interest - and start taking immediate steps to explore what a side business or startup would look like for you in those areas. You’ve been hearing about the gig economy, home-based businesses, solopreneurs, and how because of technology and social media, starting your own business has never been easier in the history of the world.
Now is the time for you to get serious and explore this for yourself. No matter your status, with job, without job - start researching and exploring now. Start digging your well now - before you’re thirsty. And you may just get lucky and create a bigger better life for yourself.
And we’re not just talking about fancy tech and white collar jobs. We’re talking about everyone - plumbers, hairstylists, building contractors, childcare workers, food service workers, retail workers, cubicle workers - everyone. We need to look at your skills, talents, hobbies, and interests - what can be made into a business and how - and how fast.
Not everyone can (or wants to) drive an Uber or Door Dash. There’s a lot more opportunity out there with everyone connected via technology and social media. People will always need and want things, no matter how bad the economy. Let’s explore what you’re good at, enjoy, and find ways to make income for you and your family, and be your own boss.
I hope this post gets a lot of people thinking and taking action.
So I'm going to do my part by starting a free membership on this website (Plan Your Start) which will include a free motivational & informational Email Newsletter, a free Member Forum, and a series of free Webinars and Online Live Q&A Sessions. The topic and content of each will be all about what you've read here - what we all can and should be doing to investigate, plan...and possibly launch, your own self-sustaining, life-sustaining startup.
If you want to connect with me, you can comment below or email me - and be sure to sign up here so we can include you in the free membership program.
Allen is a startup coach and professor of Entrepreneurship at the University of South Florida's nationally ranked top 10 entrepreneurship program and an Entrepreneur in Residence at the University of Tampa Lowth Center for Entrepreneurship. He's also a co-founder and director at one of the first and largest startup accelerators in the SE United States - the Tampa Bay Wave. Allen has had several successful startups and has done his fair share of solopreneuring along the way. His first and most recent book is Quit to Start - How to Discover Your Best Idea, Gain the Confidence, and Plan Your Escape.You can see a recent podcast interview with Allen here. You can email Allen at firstname.lastname@example.org and you can purchase the book on Amazon or discounted at www.quittostart.com/thebook.