Are you one of those who believe you can’t eat your cake and have it? Well, now you can. What if I told you could keep your job and still build a successful business. Yes, it’s possible.

It’s like using a stone to kill two birds. For good reasons, it is the dream of every employee to quit their job and start a business. Despite the large number of people who hate their jobs, there are quite a few of them who are passionate about their jobs for reasons like, huge salary, connection/relationship with clients or colleagues or it may be that their job just resonates with their personal interests.

There are countless mentors and coaches out there who will urge you to quit your job abruptly and pursue your dreams, and if you don’t, you’re not serious and won’t likely become successful.

Although, I’m an ardent advocate of people pursuing their dreams and passion, I don’t encourage people to quit their job hastily without any plans. I made that mistake sometimes ago and the outcome was devastating.

The truth is, not everybody who starts a business succeeds at it (at the first attempt). This is not because they had the wrong business idea or lacked capital to scale the business. Most of the time, it’s because, they made bad decision right at the onset of their business.

Without much ado, let’s look at how to build a successful business while keeping a full-time job.

Validate your idea
Before ever starting a business, ask yourself, if this is something you’re passionate about. Is it passion or an outburst of excitement?

Or perhaps, you’ve been enchanted with the spirit of “monkey see, monkey do”. Because Mr Okafor is successful in that business and you think you too could be.

Remember, things will get difficult; you’d have to work almost 24/7. There will be tough decisions to be made. You’d have very little time left for friends and family. You’d feel stress at its core.

So, be really sure this is something you are passionate about and also make sure this is something people would be willing to pay money for. If you start your business based on hear-say or feelings, you’d likely fail woefully.

To validate your idea, ask friends and potential clients. Carry out a market research. Find out if there’s a need in the market for your business.

Set Realistic Goals
It’s difficult to get anywhere if you don’t know where you are going. Set attainable and realistic goals for yourself to avoid going round the circle. Start with daily goals, then weekly and monthly. Don’t neglect the small things you do for the growth of your business everyday.

It could be calling/emailing a prospect, writing a business plan, registering your business name or making a market research.

Then your weekly goals could be, getting one or two paying clients. Your monthly goals could be making six figures, being featured on a big media house or pitching a major investor.

Whatever it is, having these defined goals, keep you on track and move your business to greater heights.

It’s going to take lots of discipline and commitment to attain your business goals. It may require, staying up late at night or waking very early in the morning. Sometimes, you have to use your last kobo to support your business.

Don’t do anything to destroy your full-time job because you still need the income from it to sustain yourself and business. Disciplining yourself to achieve success in your business could mean, respecting every agreement you had with your employee to avoid any legal issue.

Avoid any conflict between your job and business. Set time to work on your business ONLY after your day job. That means, every office work should end in the office while your home should be used for building your empire.

As someone who is working at a full-time job, you have a limited time left. Rather than spend that limited time figuring things out alone, invest in a coach, mentor, app or software. As a business owner, you have to make lots of investment to become successful. Invest in anything that will propel your business growth.

Don’t wait until you start making six figures before you investing. Figure out those things that are essential to your business growth and invest in them.

Focus on doing things that are important and outsource the “dirty” aspect of it to freelancers. However, learn basic skills required in your business but don’t spend your precious time doing things that you would have simply outsourced.

Sites like oDesk, Elance and Fiverr come in handy when looking for affordable place to outsource.

Alternatively, you can bring in a partner who complements your skills and abilities. You can as well employ someone if you have the money.

It is advisable, you outsource those things you won’t be needing everyday like graphic work and web designing.

When outsourcing, make sure you don’t spend money on things you would have done effortlessly.

Get Paying Clients Fast
You’re running a business and not a charity organization. The earlier you start making money from your business, the better for you. In fact, you’re not in business yet, if you’re not making money, no matter how little it is.

So, make getting a paying client your top priority. Go to where your target audience is and sell your business to them. That’s after you might have developed a cordial relationship with them.

Leverage on your immediate connection and relationship – friends, colleagues, church members. Tell them about your business. Don’t be shy. You’re a hustler.

Sell yourself first, then your value and finally your business to your clients.

Do whatever it is you can to get at least two or three paying clients in a week. Just do anything to make sure people get to know about your business.



Photo Credit: Monkey Business Images |

By Lawrence Micheals

An incurable optimist, a writer, poet, a technopreneur in the making, a resource personnel, an event planner who is technically gifted and clinical when it matters.

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