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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Setting up on your own

Leaving the rat race by setting up on your own is a move that is increasingly appealing to people across Britain, as well as many countries around the world. Increasingly, happiness at work is being valued as much as the other benefits of a job.

When your work, or lack of it, doesn't align with your passions and values it can seem that the obvious way out is to find a way to make your own livelihood. Even if you have never worked before you probably have valuable transferable skills.

The first step to this career path is to find inspiration. Do you have a great idea for a business or an invention that you believe can change people's lives? 

Next you need a plan. This might include making samples, testing them out and costing production, or it may consider what admin, accounting and other paperwork you are going to need on a regular basis, and whether you need to outsource that work. Will you need insurance of any sort? Are there licences or certificates for the sort of work you plan to do? 

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Then a business plan is vital. There are lots of sites on the web that give advice and templates for business plans, and most banks offer advice as well in the hope you will go to them for a start up loan.

There is also a lot of advice about the whole process of setting up a business, including advice from BusinessLink and HMRC set up by the government.

This American site can help put you in touch with a mentor in your field and The Guardian offers some advice about finding a mentor.

If you have items for sale one place to market them is a market. Find stalls available in markets around the country at Stallfinder. Also try a blog to market your business, the basics are laid out here but there are lots of advice sites for new bloggers. If you are selling online make sure your social media presence does you justice.

Have a look at the post Starting Your Own Business on this blog for more ideas, and this link for tips on success.

And finally, if you are working from home try this design for making a room divider to keep your office separate from the rest of your home.

Don't forget, there is a lot of free information out there, make sure you do your research before you consider paying someone to help you.

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