While there are an unlimited number of reasons to start a business, there are several that signify someone is well-suited to be a business owner. Many people start a business for the lifestyle benefits, such as a flexible schedule. Others start a business to better align with their personality traits, such as being comfortable with uncertainty.
There are many reasons to start a business, including lifestyle benefits and the ability to utilize unique personality traits. For lifestyle benefits, starting a business can provide a flexible schedule with the opportunity to think creatively. Additionally, if you have certain personality traits, such as being comfortable with uncertainty, you may want to start a business.
Before starting a business, you’ll want to register the business as a legal entity in the state where it will operate. This protects the business owner’s personal assets if a lawsuit were to occur against the business. IncFile is an online legal service that assists business owners with filing paperwork with the state. Get your business registered with IncFile for $49 plus state fees.
Here are 18 reasons to start a business:
1. You Like to Solve Problems
A popular reason to start a business is you like to solve problems. If you find that in your current job you seek out problems to solve, rather than push the responsibility on someone else, you may be ready to start your own business. Someone who enjoys the responsibility of solving problems is considered to have an entrepreneurial mindset.
As a business owner, you will be constantly solving problems. Employees, customers, and vendors will all come to you with questions you need to answer and problems you need to solve. As the business owner, the buck stops with you, so you cannot pass off challenges to someone else.
Typically, your business may start with solving one big problem, such as dry cleaning clothes or serving food to customers. To solve those big problems, you have to solve thousands of micro-problems, like who to hire, which vendor to choose, and how much capital to raise. Tackling the dozens of micro-problems every day is what defines a business owner.
“Start a business because you are solving a problem that you see in your life. Chances are others are experiencing the exact same issue. Also listen to your intuition. There is a reason why the idea struck YOU. You may be the perfect person to solve it. Don’t ignore or diminish that power. From there, start talking to everyone you know about your business idea. People, resources, and advice will naturally come your way.
— Ashley Connell, CEO & Founder, Prowess Project
2. You’re Comfortable With Uncertainty
A large part of deciding if you should start a business is dealing with uncertainty. Especially when first starting out, the success of the business is uncertain. The revenue of a new business tends to go up and down. One month, you may have enough profit to invest in a new piece of equipment or marketing strategy. The next month, it could be a struggle to pay your employees, let alone yourself.
This uncertainty is not for every type of personality. Even if you decide to open a low-risk business, such as a franchise, the uncertainty of employees showing up or vendors forgetting an order is enough of an unknown to keep an entrepreneur up at night. Before starting your own business, make sure you’re comfortable with all types of uncertainty.
3. You’re Good With Financial Management
What gets measured, gets improved. If, as a business owner, you fail to track and measure your finances, you won’t be able to improve certain areas of the business. For example, you won’t know if the new product line is outperforming other products, or you won’t know your highest-performing associates.
If you find yourself tracking your own personal finances with a budget, or you’re studying your current employer’s financial statements, you may be ready to start your own business. If you hire a bookkeeper for your business, you don’t have to be an expert in creating financial statements like profit and loss, balance sheet, and cash flow; however, you need to know enough to interpret the performance of your business.
4. You Want to Call the Shots
As a business owner, you get to make the big decisions for the company. If you’ve ever worked hard on a project or an initiative only to have the boss decide to go another direction, you know how frustrating it can be to be ignored. As the boss of your own business, you’re calling the shots and making the big decisions. If that sounds appealing to you, you may want to be a business owner.
“Business gives you the opportunity to command the course of your own ship. When you run a business, you are the person to make all the decisions. Your decisions can never be always right and often you get in trouble for making wrong decisions. But, making decisions for your own business gives you the power to steer your own ship in your own voyage. You don’t need to take orders from anyone else and can live your life at your own discretion.”
— Andrei Vasilescu, CEO, Don’t Pay Full
5. You Desire a Flexible Schedule
Many people start a business to have a more flexible schedule. If you’re stuck in a job where you’re required to clock in and clock out, having a more flexible job will sound appealing. Additionally, some people, like mompreneurs, would like a more flexible job so they can spend more time with their children.
Just having a business doesn’t guarantee you’ll have a flexible schedule, especially when just starting out. Many business owners routinely work over 10-hour days. Many work on the weekends as well. To have a flexible schedule as a business owner, it’s important to delegate tasks and make sure you’re working on the right things in the business that will lead to revenue growth.
6. You’re Looking for Motivation
In addition to making more money, some people are looking for a business they can be passionate about. Many people leave a job that doesn’t excite them to operate a business that does. Maybe someone loves coffee and is passionate about sourcing and roasting the best coffee beans for local restaurants. Or maybe someone is passionate about delivering better daycare to children. Whatever your interests are, doing them full time could make work easier to accomplish.
7. You’re Persistent
A great quality for a business owner to have is that they don’t take “no” for an answer. Yes, it’s wise to be respectful of others. However, in business, “no” tends to mean “no, not right now” and not “no, forever.”
If you keep following up with potential clients and vendors every few months, at some point they may do business with you. How persistent you are with potential clients tends to show how hard you will work for them when hired.
8. Working From Home Is Important to You
In addition to having a flexible job, many people would like to have a location-flexible job. When many people think of being a business owner, they think of having a brick-and-mortar (physical location) business. That doesn’t have to be true for your business. With more advanced and affordable technology, such as free video calls with Zoom, more business owners are working from home than ever before.
For example, freelancers can start businesses by getting clients from websites like Fiverr and Upwork. If you build a quality company profile on a freelancer website, you may start to receive more inquiries than you can handle. At that point, your business is ready to hire its first remote employee. You’ve transitioned from a freelancer to the owner of a marketing agency.
“The reason that I started my business was that I wanted to stay home with my baby son. When it was time to go back to work after maternity leave, I didn’t want to. I worked a month and then decided to quit my job to start my own business. Now, it has been three years and my ecommerce business does $500,000 in sales. Starting my own business was the best decision I have ever made!”
— Becky Beach, Owner, Mom Beach
9. You Want to Make More Money
One of the reasons people start their own business is to simply make more money. As the business owner, you’re taking on the financial risk of the business. If the business fails, you lose your investment. However, because of that inherent financial risk, you also have the opportunity to make a lot of money if the business succeeds.
Not all businesses are started because the owner is passionate about the business. Some operate a business simply to make money. The owner of the traffic cone company may not be passionate about traffic cones, but may be interested in solving a problem and making more money by solving it.
10. You Want to Become a Sovereign Individual
From a business perspective, a sovereign individual is someone who has complete control over their income. No single person, online mob, or government can take away his or her income. This type of freedom comes with many digital businesses. If you have a loyal online following that purchases your products, such as an e-book or online course, you can run a business from any country in the world.
11. You Want to Have True Job Security
You cannot have true job security until you own your own business. As long as the bills are paid and laws are followed, no one can fire you except you. When you’re working under someone else, they can fire you for many reasons, including underperformance or the need to downsize.
While there is a lot of uncertainty that comes with owning a business, as long as the business is performing well, you can be certain that no one can fire you from your job. Job security is also a reason why a business owner may decide to keep their company private. When the company has an initial public offering (IPO), the owner is no longer the owner. Instead, the company board can vote to remove them as President or Chief Executive Officer (CEO).
“One important reason you should start a business is to avoid being solely dependent on an employee’s salary. Long-term employment can quickly be disrupted by an unexpected layoff or termination. I strongly believe that the best time to start a business is when you’re employed. This gives you an opportunity to use some of your wages to invest back into your own business. Starting a business is an excellent way to help you create multiple income streams.”
— Keesha Johnson, Founder, My Mission To Escape
12. You’re Comfortable With Delegation
As a business grows, the owner cannot operate every part of the business. They have to delegate tasks for other employees to accomplish. Delegation can be difficult for many people to do. Some like to have control over every aspect of a project. This is a poor trait for business owners. If you’re stuck in the weeds, doing the day-to-day tasks of the business, it’s a challenge to have time for the big decisions you need to make for the business.
There’s a phrase for business owners who struggle with delegation: They’re working in the business, not on the business. For a business to truly grow, the owner needs to take a step back and let the smart employees they hired get work done.
13. You Want to Work in the Weeds But See the Trees
As the business owner, you get to work on whatever you’d like in the business. Working in the weeds means you get to work on the day-to-day tasks, if you choose. For example, if you’re operating a pressure washing company, you could do the actual pressure washing work. However, as the boss, you could also hire others to do the work for you.
Seeing the trees is the strategic portion of the business. As the owner, you can utilize your strategic thinking skills to make big business decisions. For example, with the pressure washing company, you can anticipate what other services your customers may want in addition to pressure washing. You can also decide which locations to market your services.
As an employee, you’re stuck in the weeds; if you would like to be involved in the strategic decision-making portion of the business, you’re typically told to do your main job. As the business owner, you get to think strategically by default. Many people have a skill set where they can think abstractly and strategically. If this is you, you may want to be a business owner.
14. You’re Looking to Learn New Skills
As the owner of a new business, you have a great opportunity to learn new skills. In a single day, you may speak at your local Rotary Club, hire a new employee, sign up for new software, and handle an upset customer. As an employee of the same business, you may do none of these things. All the responsibilities of being a business owner force you to learn new skills.
You may also be frustrated with your skill development at your current job and prefer to learn new skills at a quicker pace. However, as a business owner, you can decide which skills you’d like to learn and when. For example, if you think social media would be a good addition to your business’ marketing strategy and it’s something you’d like to learn, you can spend your time learning it.
“When you own your own business, there is no time for long learning processes. You grow skills rapidly. Things are happening at an incredibly fast rate and you need to catch up. Although it can be stressful at times, you will have a chance to acquire skills you never could if you worked for another person.
“Leading a business will teach you how to be calm and patient and how to think strategically while quickly responding to everyday changes. Even if your business doesn’t excel, you’ll still learn a lot from the process.”
— Ana Bera, Co-founder, SafeAtLast.co
15. You’d Like to Create Jobs for Your Community
Creating jobs for others is a very rewarding experience. You’re not only providing an income for others, but you’re helping grow your city, state, and country. Many small business owners say creating jobs is one of the main reasons they are business owners. Creating a business where others are proud to say they work can be a great motivation.
Additionally, you may be interested in creating a business where your family can work. Running a family business has its own unique challenges, but it can be very rewarding to provide a quality work environment to those you’re closest to.
16. You’d Like to Think Creatively
Another reason to start a business is to utilize your creative talents. Many people are stuck in a routine job where they don’t think abstractly. Starting a business in a creative field, such as graphic design or photography, can give a creative person an outlet for their skills.
Thinking creatively doesn’t have to be done in an artistic field. Creativity could be coming up with a new and unique solution to a challenging problem. Any type of abstract thinking that exists as a thought can be considered creative thinking. For example, deciding to merge with another company may not be considered a creative exercise, but it is. Before making the move to merge companies, you have to consider personalities, roles, market opportunities, and market costs.
17. You Want to Improve Your Personal Brand
An interesting reason to start a business is that it will improve your personal brand. As a successful business owner, you gain credibility in your industry and respect in your local community.
For example, if you’re a real estate agent, becoming a broker and opening a real estate office can give you more clout in the industry. You may be able to get higher income clients and opportunities like exclusive rights to sell a new development. Additionally, having the title of a business owner may earn you additional respect in your local community. People may perceive you differently and present new opportunities like local investments.
Some people dream of becoming a professional speaker or a published author. The experiences you have as a business owner are a great way to improve your personal brand and make this dream a reality. As the owner of a business, you can basically operate a mini-reality TV show about the business and grow an online following. Grow a large following on a platform like Instagram, and you will naturally be invited to speak at events.
18. You’re Resilient
A must-have quality for a business owner is resiliency. When a difficult situation arises, do you call it quits? Or do you work twice as hard and power through it? If you’re a business owner long enough, tough times are sure to arise: A recession hits. A key employee quits. Your main vendor goes out of business. Google lowers your website’s search engine ranking. If you thrive in challenging and difficult situations, that’s a reason to start a business.
“Someone should start a business only if they have the grit and determination to make it succeed despite the overwhelming odds against you. If you aren’t someone who looks adversity in the face and smiles, then starting a business is not the right choice for you. There will be many days where smiling back in adversity’s face is very tough to do. Especially when you are just starting, every decision falls on you, and you own the outcome, good or bad. This simply isn’t the life for most people.”
— Nathaniel Hovsepian, Owner, The Expert Home Buyers
Asking yourself “Should I start a business?” is the first step to becoming a business owner. Asking that question means you’re already thinking about the benefits of owning your own business and how you’d like to challenge yourself. The real question you should be asking is “What type of business should I start?” Not all businesses operate the same and you should find one that fits your preferred lifestyle, personality, and skill set.
Before incurring expenses or earning income with your business, you need to register it with the state as a legal entity. This can ensure your personal finances won’t be affected by any business-related issues like a lawsuit or bankruptcy. IncFile is an online legal service that assists business owners in registering their business as a legal entity. Get started with IncFile today for only $49 plus state fees.