Diaries of an Entrepreneur

ADAPT . CHANGE . Keep in good stead!

Keshav's Blogs, Jan 8, 2020

"Yaar kuch apna kaam start karte hain!!..."

This is one thought that has invariably crossed every working employee atleast one point in time or the other! Well it does sound exciting but the space is not entirely free of its challenges. I entered into the entrepreneurial space nearly an year back to give life to an idea I nurtured for sometime now! Being in the financial services space, I thought of penning down the singular one challenge that being self employed presents you with!!

Before I speak of challenge, there is one area that I must highlight is the mindset change!The transformation from a protected corporate employee to a self employed professional is a huge one. The ability to adapt to the changed environment is critical as you will need to adopt a different level of agility and urgency to deal with and implement things. After all it is your own money, however empowering it may sound it also has an element of vulnerability to it and you may not necessarily be able to do things the way you would have done as a corporate employee. Adjusting and responding well to this mindset change will contribute in a huge way to the overall health of your business.

So, what is the biggest challenge of being self-employed? Yes, it is the uncertainty of income irrespective of the scale of business. The missing cushion of a secure monthly credit in the bank account aka Salary could bring in a whole lot of insecurity. However, in my experience as a fintech entrepreneur, discipline and a little fore planning can go a long way in managing finances well and keeping unpredictability at bay. After all unpredictability and unplanned situations can make even the more steadier businesses unsettled. Here, I share with you 3 simple but impactful practices that can serve really well if followed consistently.

Money saved is money earned

Said a wise man, but those who practise are wiser indeed! Especially in a new business startup environment this is a powerful foundation of a practice to set up for self and for the employees to be conscious of. One must maintain a balanced approach from aggressive to ballistic to conscientious consideration of every opportunity to save money. Even small hidden costs like a hasty hire need to be carefully watched and avoided lest it should mount up to re hiring, training cost and ultimately productivity lost costs.

Make a budget and stick to it!

We know you want your business and your set up to speak quality but I would say quality should be seen in your delivery and execution and not just in the way your set up looks. Making a realistic budget and sticking to it is one practice I heed to proactively and tell all my young entrepreneurs as well. It is tempting to make your office look savvy but later on being forced to compromise on even some statutory payments. The key is no point going overboard in frugal expenses and keeping it real!. Making an exhaustive budget upfront will help you manage your cash flow realistically and planning for future smooth and practical.

Invest . Secure . Repeat!

This one can never be an overkill! There are every sort of risks associated with every kind of business be it small or large. From a business deal going bust at the last minute to inventory getting spoiled due to the some external factors to some totally unexpected headwinds. It is extremely important that every entrepreneur invests towards building an emergency portfolio/ fund. A reserve liquid or in form of some securities or assets is something which should be thought of and implemented even before the planning for starting or expanding a business is done. The quantum should be enough to adequately cover any emergency that may come big or small. The key here is to keep reviewing it from time to time keeping the contribution in line with your own business growth plans. You never know when you or your business will need to lean on this cushion so keep it handy and fluffy!

Smart money management will not only help you mitigate any unseen risks but also can give you the much needed confidence to keep afloat till a bad phase is over after all... A bend in the road is not the end of the road unless you fail to make the change!!

About Me

30 years of corporate life and now an entrepreneur. I am happy to open windows to my learnings here. In busy times as these, I hope these perspectives will make you pause and reflect and contribute in some way to your learnings as well!

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