Even with all of the risks, the rewards of owning a small business such as a sign shop or Tee-shirt business often outweighs the disadvantages. From a financial standpoint, if your current employer pays you much less than you think you can make on your own, it may be time to start your own business. In addition to the monetary rewards, opening a new business can satisfy many of your other needs.
The most obvious advantage is it is great to be the boss. No one is looking over your shoulder scrutinizing your activities. You get to make all of the decisions and never need to answer to anyone, other than your customers, the government and the bank or investors. Small businesses are also more nimble that large organizations because you are not constrained by a plodding bureaucracy.
You have heard the saying that if you do what you love to do, you will never work a day in your life. If you have a passion for the sign making business, you are living your dream and getting paid for it. Designing and manufacturing appealing graphics, gives you a chance to create something that you can be proud of.
What’s more, what you create as a visual communications specialist can help other businesses grow and prosper. The sense of providing a valuable service to your community should satisfy your self-esteem. As a member of your community, you also have the opportunity to become involved in local activities and engage in charity work in your town or city.
Adding to your job satisfaction, owning your business requires you to master a variety of skills, including accounting, sales and marketing as well as the technical aspects of production. What is especially satisfying is building a new graphics business that fulfills your dreams and provides your family with their desired lifestyle.
As your business grows, you will need to hire employees, which provides others with a paycheck and hopefully enriches their lives with rewarding careers. Better yet, as an employer you get to decide who you want to work with. You get to choose those who share your passion for the business. You also have the latitude to dismiss those whose negative energy saps the enthusiasm of your team.
As your own boss, you can make your schedule. This gives you a chance to take the time off when you need to enjoy your family. Of course, most successful shop owners devote countless evening hours and weekends to their businesses.
Owning your own shop means that you are assuming a tremendous amount of risk. The good news is if your business is successful, you have the chance to make more money than working as an employee.
As a shop owner you can also write off many expenses that you can’t write off as an employee. These write-offs include entertainment, vehicle expenses, retirement contributions and travel expenses. Always consult a tax professional regarding legitimate deductions.
With all of the advantages of owning your own shop, there are some disadvantages. While you can increase your income as a business owner, the risks are high. According to Bloomberg, 80% of businesses fail within the first year and a half. This means you could lose your investment.
The reasons for failure are varied. Many new startups lack sufficient funding to sustain themselves during the precarious first two years. Other reasons include a failure to identify an unmet need in the marketplace. New shops also fail if they don’t differentiate themselves from the competition or because they do a poor job of communicating a difference.
As a new business owner, also expect to work very long hours and experience elevated levels of stress. This added pressure can be hazardous to your health and can stain your personal relationships.
What can also challenge a new business owner is disciplining yourself to set aside enough money to pay your taxes. Owning your own shop also means that you need to provide for your own medical expenses. The good news is that you may be able to deduct all or some of these expenses on your taxes.
Finally, while owning your own shop allows you the advantage of doing what you love, running a business also involves some responsibilities that you may not love. I know some talented sign makers who love designing and manufacturing graphics, but hate either sales or dealing with the public or they detest the accounting aspects of business.