The coronavirus pandemic may have finally given you the time to tap into new interests or even old loves that you neglected. The long lockdown may have also allowed you a good amount of time to rethink your current profession and wonder if it is something you see yourself doing 10 or 20 years down the line.
Do you see a future in pursuing your passions? Is your hobby something you would consider a profitable pursuit? At this point, you may have similar questions running through your mind.
Before letting go of your previous commitments to fully make your hobby a business, there are important considerations to make. Let this guide help you know if it is the right time to dive into this new challenge.
What Matters Most to You?
Intimately understanding your priorities can clarify the wisest next step. Ask yourself these questions to see where you are in your actual willingness to start a business.
Will it be a viable source of income?
Are you selling a product or a service? Does it already have a market? To get a good gauge of the profitability of your potential venture, do a test run of selling your goods or services to see how interested people are and how much they are willing to pay.
Pro-tip: the pandemic market is highly drawn to meaningful items that give them a sense of connection with other people. Can your business fill this need? It can even be as small as making hand-crafted items or providing a customized service, such as personalized gift boxes.
Additionally, since there is a larger emphasis on the home today, your “special” service can focus on addressing this unique opening. Maybe be a curating service that provides home essentials with a personal touch. Local markets are highly likely to be interested in personalized knife sets and monogrammed home items that sell an experience of home.
As you think about it, remember also that it isn’t solely about what you can offer. It is equally important how you are able to present your offerings to consumers.
Keep my day job or be a full-time business owner?
Look at your day job. Is it the kind of work you want to continue doing for the long run? Are you satisfied with your monthly income?
If you find genuine satisfaction in your current job and don’t mind its demands and schedule, weigh it against the prospect of losing that security. Instead, you become your own boss and call the shots, but the money is not as easily guaranteed.
Ask yourself if this passion is something you are compelled to pursue amidst all the variables. If the answer is a resounding “Yes!” in your heart, then it may just be the time to wave your desk job goodbye.
Do I mind the demands of business?
That is, are you okay with being under certain financial pressures to deliver and to work under strict deadlines? Maybe until now you have been doing your hobby at your own pace, your own rules, and a non-specific budget. All of these will change once you decide to pursue it as a livelihood.
The strict time pressures are an important factor to take into account. You have to assess if you are capable of producing a certain amount of products or provide regular services during a given period.
How Else Can I Improve?
If your answers to the previous questions point you towards going for it, then it’s time to look at the ways in which you can be better equipped to build your business.
Do I need to take classes or consultations about business?
Are you well-versed in the world of business or is it something that is totally new to you? It’s okay to ask for help! Take classes, watch webinars, or even consult a business-minded friend.
These lessons can go a long way in helping you set up your starting budget, asking prices, marketing strategy, and even formally registering your business.
Can I further hone my skills?
Pursuing your hobby as a career entails always searching for better, more efficient ways to do your work. This may mean going out of your way not just to learn more about the business side, but also about your own hobby. As skilled as you may already be now, it pays to learn new techniques and get feedback on how your business can still evolve.
As you keep pursuing this new business venture, remember that turning your hobby into a full-time job is not always pleasant. There is hard work and patience involved, but persistence can lead you to success.