Tips on Transitioning from Formal Employment to Entrepreneurship


Everyone’s journey to becoming an entrepreneur is different. While there may be some similarities, no two paths are the same. With that being said, you may have decided to read this because you’re thinking about taking the big leap into entrepreneurship. If this is the case, know that it can be a great move to make as well as one that could change your life positively. In regards to how and when you should take the big leap, that’s dependent on your situation as well as your personal preference. If you’re presently in formal employment and want to transition into entrepreneurship gradually, find some tips that could help you do so below.

Take Your Time

To begin with, when you want to transition from formal employment to entrepreneurship, it’s crucial that you don’t succumb to pressure and you take your time. However, doing this doesn’t mean giving yourself enough time to procrastinate and put it off. Create a timeline that ensures you retain a sense of urgency but still have enough time to plan carefully. In doing so, you remove some of the pressure as well as increase your chances of success.

Give Work Your Best

Another tip for transitioning from formal employment to entrepreneurship is to give work your best. It can be so tempting to begin slacking because you know you’re leaving to start your own company. However, remember the importance of leaving on a high note. Here are a few ways that you can give work your best before you head out.

  • Maintain Positive Relationships: Although you can’t get along with everyone, maintaining professional relationships is essential. Try and continue being cordial and keep personal relations positive as you never know where you may cross paths again. If you find that you have a conflict with any of your employees that’s becoming overwhelming, figure out how to use the employee assistance program as you could get free help from a professional.
  • Learn as Much as Possible: No matter what phase you’re in, it’s important to see it as a learning opportunity. It means while you’re still working, take the chance to learn as much as you can about how to run a business. See if you can work in different apartments, ask questions and see how you can use this knowledge to run your business.

Manage Your Time

Trying to balance getting ready to become an entrepreneur and formal employment can be a serious struggle. However, it isn’t one that’s impossible, so instead of seeing it as overwhelming, think about how you can make it work.

For instance, you could decide to wake up a few hours earlier in the morning and go to bed later, so you have more time to work on your business. It’s imperative that you try and have a routine in place so that you’re able to make time for doing both.

In addition to this, remember that it’s okay to socialize less while you prepare for your big transition. A time management tip to try would be first to identify where you’re wasting time. You can then create time management goals and implement a plan that works for you.

Start Doing the Groundwork

It’s important that you start doing the groundwork before you transition into entrepreneurship. You want to know that as soon as you leave formal employment, you’re ready to take off. Below are a few items that you can check off of your list during your free time.

  • Draw up a Business Plan: The first thing that you should do when carrying out groundwork is to draw up a business plan. If you’ve never done one before, there are several templates and resources online that can help you out in that department. Take your time to go through each section of your plan and carry out adequate research. The more comprehensive your plan is, the better your chances of success.
  • Begin Networking: Networking is another key part of the groundwork you should be doing when getting ready to transition from formal employment to entrepreneurship. Find events that you can meet prospective business partners or leaders in your industry. By doing so, you would have developed a strong network which will work in your favor later on. When networking, remember to converse with others, listen actively and follow-up after the fact.
  • Get Extra Knowledge: When it comes to running a business, you need as much knowledge as you can get. Although you won’t know everything, make sure you know the basics and have enough industry knowledge. Some ways to do this would be by taking a course and getting qualifications if need be. Also, getting a mentor who you could learn from would go a long way too.


When you’re getting ready to start a business, it isn’t uncommon for you to end up spending more money than you expect. It can be financially draining considering start-up costs as well as unforeseen expenses and mistakes. For this reason, it’s crucial that you save money while you’re still working so that you have enough to keep you going when you’re starting things up.

Saving to start your business could mean taking on extra work or cutting back on expenses. Try opening a separate account dedicated to at least six months of savings and avoid dipping into it or it will set your saving goals back.

Speak to Other Entrepreneurs

There is nothing like knowing that you aren’t alone, especially when you’re doing something as hard as starting a business. You can look for communities of entrepreneurs online in order to rub minds, learn and get ideas. The more entrepreneurs that you have in your corner, the better you may feel emotionally and mentally as a result.

Deciding to become an entrepreneur isn’t an easy decision to make, but it’s important that you understand it’s a journey. You won’t do everything perfectly, and mistakes are inevitable, so be ready to continue learning. Ultimately it’s about dedicating your time and money to helping solve a problem and serve your customers.


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