Working for Yourself
Starting your own business is a big step, but this expert's advice will help pave the way towards success.
Woman on Phone
Divide life and work
If you decide to start your own business part-time, you'll need excellent time-management skills, strong self-discipline and support from family and friends. It's a big commitment. To succeed, think small. A series of small steps will get you as far as one giant step.

These steps include:
  • Developing a business concept
  • Writing a business plan
  • Acquiring basic business equipment
  • Setting a long-term target date to go full time
  • Aiming for moderate first-year revenues
  • Selecting time-saving business equipment
  • Maintaining top performance at your day job
Woman on Computer
Create a workplace
Set aside a comfortable working environment in your den, basement or garage, and concentrate on the basics: a good desk, an ergonomic chair, plenty of light, a filing cabinet, work space, a computer, a professional-grade phone and any peripherals you may need.
Man and Woman Working
Use your vacation to test a full-time run
If you think you might be ready to transition from full- to part-time, consider using your vacation to do it. In that one- or two-week period, you can find out what it's like to devote your whole day to the business. Having your own business is a way of life. You need a full-time reality check to be sure that you really like it.
Woman with Umbrella
Maintain your benefits
If and when you do go full-time, don't forget to factor in the expense of health insurance if you do make the transition. This may be something as simple as opting to take advantage of a COBRA plan that allows you to retain your company insurance for a period of time after you leave. Of course, the full cost of the insurance will be your own responsibility; your former employer will no longer pay for it.
Calculating Finances
Keep a stash for Uncle Sam
Another factor that is too often forgotten is the amount of money you have to pay the tax man. Before you make the leap to full-time entrepreneur, calculate the net amount you need (after taxes) to sustain yourself and your family. Then add in all your business expenses to that amount, remembering to factor in additional self-employment taxes that you did not have to bear as somebody else's employee. The final figure is the amount of revenue your business needs to take in before you can quit your part-time job.
Involve your family
Make sure that everyone involved—partners, clients, spouses and children—see the move as positive, and most of all, don't forget to take care of your health and your spirit during the transition.

Keep Reading: How to ensure success