Category Archives: Small Business

That Second or Even Third Job

Ok, if you have cut your expenses to the lowest point you are comfortable with and you still don’t feel like your getting towards your goals, you might want to consider dealing with the other side of the equation and picking up a second job (or even a third if you already have two).

Now obviously this isn’t a decision to make lightly, since you could potentially be putting a lot of your time in total towards work.  If you do this too much you could burn out so here are some items to consider:

  • Family – Do you have kids?  Are they young?  Is so, you NEED to discuss this with your spouse.  It’s not fair to dump the kids on them all the time for you to work unless they agree to it.  So perhaps consider doing contact work or something else which can be done after the kids are in bed.
  • Interest or Passion – What do you like to do?  Are you passionate about something?  Try to find a job that you will like to do.  It will ensure you don’t start to regret your decision to take a second job after just a few months.  Remember happiness is just as important as money.
  • Time – Do you have the time to take a second job? Be honest with yourself.  Can you spare another 10 hours a week with your other work?  If you are already putting in 70 hours a week at your other job you might not have much time left after the basics of eating, cooking and cleaning.  Try not to have work and nothing else in your life.
  • Pay – Are you going to be making more or less than your day job?  If more, that’s great.  If less, you might want to consider just putting in more time at your first job for extra money (if possible).  Remember the more you get paid, the less hours you have to put in to get to your goals (but remember to consider tax implications, it’s no good to get a second job to just pay the government most of it).  Consider trying to get a raise at your first job if you don’t think you can handle your second job.
  • Other Benefits – Your second job might actually be more for the other benefits than the pay.  Do you get free access to goods or services?  Is your second job more of a hobby than work?  Remember you don’t just have to work for money, it could also be about doing something you love and getting it free.
  • Self Employed or Employee – So far I’ve been mainly talking about taking a second job.   Another option is starting your own business.  Remember that you will be putting in LOTS of time to get a business off the ground, mostly without pay.  So consider that and why you want that second job before going down this route.

Well that’s my consideration list.  If you have an idea on something else please leave a comment.

Should Everyone Be an Entrepreneur

Should everyone try be an entrepreneur at least once?  I know most kids at least try a ice tea/ lemonade stand once during their childhood, but should everyone try running a small business as an adult at least part time?

The reason this idea came to my head was thinking about my wife the other day.  To be honest I wouldn’t expect her to be good at running a business, but other than the odd accounting question or tax issue she does do a great job running her daycare.  She has also learned a lot from running the daycare.

As I’m setting up my publishing business I’ve been thinking about how many different skills you use have to use to set up a business and run it.  Then there is all the little things you learn while doing it.  Actually after watching my wife do her business for a few years I’ve got a much deeper appreciation how difficult it can been to keep a business up and running.

In general the following are some skills you learn:

  • Crisis Management:  It’s a miracle if something doesn’t go wrong at some point with a business that is a minor crisis.
  • Client Relationships: Learning that fine balance between being friendly, but firm when you need to be.
  • Accounting & Tax: Having a clue on how to keep the books and do your taxes or even paying someone else to is usually a educational experience.
  • Cash Flow:  So far I’m avoiding spending money I don’t need to to avoid the classic trap of a crappy cash flow which can kill off a business rather quickly.
  • Time Management:  You can’t be everyone at once.  So you pick what you can do and when.

Overall these skills I think make just about anyone a bit better of an employee and certainly help you when you get to a management position.  So in general I feel a lot of people could benefit from trying their hand at a small business, but I’m not convinced everyone should do it.  Some people just don’t seem to have the drive to keep a business going for long or they don’t think out the idea all that much.

What’s your thought?  Should everyone try their hand at a small business?

The Publishing Business #1

So a while back I pointed out I was planning to launch a small business and take a try at book publishing.  I should also point out I intend to wrap this blog up in that company as well.  So regardless of the book fails or not I intend to keep the company around.

So far I haven’t had much time to work on the venture, but I’m starting to get some of the paperwork done.  I’ve filled out my company name search form and will drop this off this week.  Once that is approved I can formally regisiter the company in Saskatchewan and then start using the name I’ve picked out.  Then I’ll be off to get some banking setup and get a city business licenece.

I’ve also already picked up a new domain name for the first book.  I’m debating about picking up a domain name for the company as well.  It might be useful to hang onto for now, as I might do more than one book.

In the mean time I’ve got several items to research including:

  • PST/GST:  I know that if my sales are under $30,000 I don’t have to collect GST, but I don’t know the threshold for PST (or is there is one).
  • Communications:  Since this is micro company I don’t want to invest in a second phone line for the house.  So I’m wondering how to hand faxing and phone.  Any ideas?  A pay as you go cell phone might handle the voice part of it, but I’m looking for faxing ideas.
  • Accounting:  Do I hire this out or do it myself?  I’ve setup my wife’s books in the past, but this business is going to be a bit more complex.
  • Expansion:  I’ve also had to brain storm some issues about what if I really like this process and do I want to accept book proposals in the future.

So for all you small business owners out there, what issues do you run into?  Any hints for the newbie at the game?