What it Means to Own your Own Business

What it Means to Own your Own Business


Why would you want to go into business for yourself?  Just look at the statistics.  Around 80% of businesses started will be gone in five years.

The franchise model removes a lot of this risk. It offers ease of opening and operation.  It also helps to ensure longevity and overall success – without which the odds may be seriously stacked against an individual entrepreneur. A single fragile twig may be easily broken, but a bundle of such twigs can be impossible to even bend because of the inherent strength in numbers and solidarity. The advantages of franchise ownership help to offset the disadvantages faced by self-employment by providing the kind of resources and empowerment that promote dynamic success and sustainable profitability.

Following your dreams

Whether you go down the franchise route or not, there’s something special about owning your own business. It’s a dream come true for most people. It is right at the top of the wish list with owning your own home.  Many people have a longing to be in charge.  They want to ‘do it their way’.  They want to be responsible for their own destiny.

Generally, it starts out with little taps on the shoulder like the feeling that you should change what you’re doing, a suggestion from someone, a hint and then you start contemplating  whether to start from scratch or buy into an existing franchise.

Either way, owning a business means a great deal of responsibility as well as a great feeling of achievement and freedom that is never realised by those who work for someone else.

Owning your own business

One of the main reasons to become a business owner is that it provides a chance to make more money. Owning a business also involves a continual learning curve that teaches a wide range of skills that can be applied to any future business or financial decision. These include knowledge and hands-on experience in marketing, accounting, sales, management, budgeting and particularly self-motivation when no boss is present to give orders, offer guidance and criticism or hand out pay checks.

Owning your own business can be a two-edged sword. While the freedom of being your own boss and driving your own destiny is a great feeling, you generally have to give up a certain amount of that freedom in the beginning to get the business up and running. The sacrifice is at the beginning of the process, but the joy comes further down the road when you are at a level of maturity when you can let someone else run it for you.

That will come after much hard work and commitment on your part and on the part of the team you put together.

The upsides

So what are the upsides of owning your own business? For many people, it is a life-long goal they have at last achieved. Their business is the tangible evidence, the fruits of their labour right before their eyes. It is also the sense of personal fulfillment and professional accomplishment. It is a sense of purpose and vision and the opportunity for a creation of wealth and prosperity. It all starts and ends with you and your dream and commitment to seeing that dream come true.

Owning a business that provides a product or service that helps people can be a real thrill for the business owner. Making a profit is even more of a thrill.

The downsides

There are also downsides? When you own a business, there will be days your employees will not show up and you will have to multi-task and fill in for them. You will have to sacrifice time with your family.

Business owners, certainly in the beginning almost always take work home with them which can be unhealthy for you and your family.

When you own a business all the responsibilities are on your shoulders. You are responsible for putting the right teams in place and encouraging them to work together for a common goal.

There will be growing pains without a doubt, but that only means that you are growing. In the end, there are few challenges that are more rewarding than owning a successful and profitable business.

There are always mountains and valleys – ups and downs – to anything and owning a business is no different. But valleys are important, because they help us learn and grow, and they make the mountain tops all that much more enjoyable.

Are you ‘on the fence’ about starting your new enterprise? Step up to the challenge and go for it. It may be one of the best decisions you have ever made.

Harry Welby-Cooke
Harry Welby-Cooke is the Master Licensee for ActionCOACH South Africa. He is also the President of COMENSA (Coaches and Mentors Association of South Africa). ActionCOACH is the world’s largest executive and business coaching company with operations in 39 countries. It is also on the list of the top 100 franchises globally. As a highly successful Business and Executive coach, Harry is a master of teaching business owners how to turn their businesses around and accelerate their growth. Email him at harrywelbycooke@actioncoach.com or call 0861 226 224