Solopreneurs are a powerful and growing force in today’s career landscape. A solopreneur is “a business owner who works and runs his or her business alone.”
A solopreneur is also the proverbial chief cook and bottle washer, who started the business, owns the business, runs the business and is responsible for the business’ failure or success.
A solopreneur is not the same as an entrepreneur, however. Both assume risk and build a business, but a solopreneur does it alone.
The entrepreneur engages traditional forms of business-building, including the hiring of employees. But the solopreneur chooses whether to grow the business with contract agreements or outsourced providers rather than the standard model of employer/employee.
The benefits of solopreneurship are better experienced than reported, yet if you’re curious about the lives of these disentangled, high-risk, high-reward captains of their own fate and are considering taking the same plunge, here’s what you can expect.
1. You discover the power of automation and outsourcing.
The solopreneur must automate processes and outsource tasks. In the absence of minions to do his or her bidding, a successful solopreneur learns to create streamlined systems that accomplish crucial business tasks.
2. You live to work.
Solopreneurs don’t have to go it alone. They can just as easily shutter their shops and start papering the town with their resumes. They can go right back to the corporate grind. But, why? Work is an adventure — a passionate engagement in the excitement of life. That’s worth living for!
3. You choose everything about your business.
It takes a lot of decision-making to run the business. From the carpet’s hue to the company’s slogan, you decide everything. If you’re a sucker for control, you’ve chosen the right line of work.
4. You can create your own schedule.
A 9-to-5, a 5-to-9, or a 9-to-9? What gives? You’re the one in charge. Deciding how, when, where and how long to work is completely up to you. Most solopreneurs, though, don’t choose to binge-watch Netflix, sleep in or loll, poolside. And “creating your own schedule” is just another way to describe the inflexibility and demands of working all the time.
5. You get to keep what you make.
Yes, you have to pay taxes. Quite a bit, actually. On the other hand, your business profits are yours alone. You can choose to incorporate as an LLC or an S-corp, but either way, the money your business makes is the money that you make. Invest wisely.
6. You are responsible for your own success.
You have to take big risks if you want big rewards. Solopreneurs internalize this truth. Rather than leave their success to the whimsy of an employer, they choose to take their success firmly in hand.
Do you notice a common thread running through these 6 awesome things? Each can be tweaked ever so slightly, and ultimately turn into a terror.
In short, your passion for work may morph into a soul-sucking monster. Your high-earning potential may push you into a miserable tax morass. The necessity of making every decision yourself may burden you with a relentless mental strain.
So, the life of a solopreneur is not for anyone. It takes an iron stomach and a clear head to pull off this kind of self-brutalization and insane risk.
What’s more, these risks of soloentrepreneurship are high, and you can completely dispense with any level of normalcy
You hear people complain of their “healthcare,” and you think whathealth care? Others brag about their four weeks of accrued vacation time, and you smirk about your unlimited vacation time. Conventional cubicle dwellers moan about their mean boss, but you know the meanest boss that ever walked the planet — yourself.
The risks are high. The burdens are great. Yet the experience is transformative.
The few who have tried and succeeded at solopreneurship invariably achieve great things. Whether they continue as solopreneurs, metamorphize into entrepreneurs or leave it all behind them, they know what the solopreneur life is about, and they have the glory stories to tell about it.