Executive Careers Blog

The Upside To Ditching Your Job Search To Start A Business

For the unemployed trying to find a job, there are advantages to making your own job by starting your own business.

Your business opens immediately and might relieve immediate financial obligations. 

If you pick a business with little upfront investment, such as freelancing or consulting, you can start earning right away. 

In fact, for my clients with little severance or savings, I often advise taking paid projects to relieve the money anxiety, since a thorough job search can take several months or sometimes over a year.  One immediate client to pitch is your former employer – just because they don’t have the budget for a full-time employee doesn’t mean they can’t afford project help. 

Making decisions for your own business forces you to think about your unique market value. 

When you draw that paycheck day in and day out, sometimes you don’t know exactly what you are doing that adds to the bottom line.  When you’re out on your own, you have to bring in the money so you’d better know. 

Starting a business causes you to think about your skills and experience in a very tangible way.

Being in business for yourself enables to carve out exactly what you want to do. 

Career changers, creatives, and others who are drawn to varied list of tasks often get frustrated with the traditional job search that often favors cookie-cutter job descriptions.  Starting a business enables you to pick and choose exactly what sector you’ll serve and what you’ll be doing.

However, it doesn’t have to be either/or. 

You can stay active in your job search while you also build a business on the side.  Launching the business gives you a great answer to those prospective employers when they ask you what you’ve been doing during your unemployment.  It also enables you to keep your skills and networking current.

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Caroline Ceniza-Levine is a career expert, writer, speaker and co-founder of SixFigureStart (www.sixfigurestart.com), a career coaching firm comprised of former Fortune 500 recruiters.  Caroline is a co-author (along with Donald Trump, Jack Canfield and other leading business authors) of the upcoming "How the Fierce Handle Fear: Secrets to Succeeding in Challenging Times" spring 2010, Bascom Hill Books. Formerly in corporate HR and retained search, Caroline has recruited for Time Inc, Accenture, Citibank, Disney ABC, and others.  

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