The road to business ownership is a long road indeed. It’s complete with many ups, downs, surprises, disappointments, and mishaps. However, the moment you happen to get it right is worth all he disappointments in the world. But getting a business to thrive is difficult, especially if you’re still working a 9 to 5. Most small startups are the product of working class men and women who have spread their talent between cubicle life and pushing their brand. Through personal experience and general consensus, there are a few non-negotiable steps to building your business while working a 9 to 5:
1. Having a Working Calendar
Getting a calendar specifically for my business was essential to my sanity. As a writer, business owner, teacher and private tutor, my schedule can get quite confusing. Adding a simple editorial planner for my blog on Kurvy Etiquette and contributing articles for empirelifemag.com changed my life. It helped me maintain a balance between my personal endeavors and other writing responsibilities.
2. Prioritizing Your Time
Designating time specifically to your business is key. Without sufficient working hours for your personal business things would never get done. During this time answer emails, prepare contracts, and work on perfecting your craft. This is an excellent idea for those who have multiple channels that require attention. Incorporating this awesome tip into your daily planner will keep you ahead of the curve. Say goodbye to days of confusion and feeling overwhelmed.
3. Prioritizing your Week
If setting specific times during your day is a no go, no worries, there is an alternative. Instead of focusing on your business a few hours a day, simply set aside specific days. As a designer, I need a little more than a few hours for creativity to spark as well as finish pieces that may require a bit more accuracy. Due to the need for more time to create, I’ve designated Friday, Saturday and Sunday as my creative days. Monday through Thursday, I tend to spend my time writing. This schedule allows me to fully focus on the task at hand. Thus leaving less work undone.
Related: The Power of Prioritization
4. Use Time-off Wisely
Use your breaks and vacation time wisely. Working in corporate sometimes has its perks. One being paid time off (PTO). PTO is an entrepreneurs dream but you must utilize this privilege wisely. Needing a break to remove yourself from the stress of office life is a needed practice. However, one must be sure to create habit of using half of your PTO to advance your business. For those who may not have PTO as an option, taking “mental health days” should still be a requirement. Though you may not get paid for missing several days at time I found that missing an occasional Thursday and Friday makes for a more productive weekend.
Related: Top Travel Spots for Empirelistas
5. Take Time for Self
The most essential key to balancing working a 9 to 5 and pursuing your entrepreneurial dreams is having “quality me time.” Taking a day of rest will free you from the constant battle between being busy and exhausted. Exhaustion has the ability to give the impression that everything you hope to accomplish cannot be done. True, it won’t happen in a day but taking time to regroup and collect yourself makes room for fresh new ideas. Of course it is almost impossible for some of us to detach. The idea of a day filled with no business is unheard of in the entrepreneurial world right? I agree, and because of this I sometimes give myself permission to answer emails. Should these emails turn into physical work, I file them away according to importance and get back to them on regular scheduled work days. Quality me time days do not happen often. Compromise by letting yourself have 2 days a month. Two days spent relaxing, catching up on favorite TV programs, family time, miscellaneous shopping or time with friends.
Balancing multiple endeavors is no easy feat. It takes dedication, tenacity, and follow through and it’s not for everyone. It takes a special kind of Empirelista to go after her dreams and stick to them. We hope these 5 short pointers help guide you into your next phase of business in 2016.
Did we miss anything? Let Empire know how you manage a 9 to 5 while building your empire.