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According to research by the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, 1 in 10 people under 35 want to start a new business in Ireland. The average age of the promising entrepreneur is 39, which implies most have some sort of experience to back them up. Unless you have considerable funding, you will probably need to start your new business while working full time.

When thinking of starting your own business, there are some key things to keep in mind.

Review your employment contract

Starting a new business while still employed can be risky. You need to understand what you can and cannot do. Get out your employment contract. Familiarise yourself with its terms and conditions. If you have created an innovative product, design or piece of code that is at the core of your business idea, you need to know who owns the intellectual property rights. Some employers claim intellectual property rights over everything you create, even in your spare time.

Many organisations prohibit employees from working for a competitor concurrently or within a set period of time from a contract termination. If your venture could be deemed to be reasonable competition, there may be a conflict of interest.

Avoid the temptation to lure away your current employer’s clients. This shows a lack of integrity and can cause a lot of trouble. There may be clauses that prohibit this practice and be cause for instant dismissal. It may even put you in a legally precarious position.

Draw a line in the sand – set boundaries

Draw a line in the sand. Set boundaries between your day-to-day responsibilities and your dream. Create a routine and stick to it. Do not cross that line for you will put everything at risk. Make sure you maintain your work standards for your current employer while working on your own business in your spare time.

Commit to your dream

Commit to your dream. Making a commitment while still working full time means making sacrifices to free up time and money. You need every spare cent to get you going.

Do your market research. Where does your idea sit in the marketplace? Is it feasible? No matter how good you are, your gut instincts will not convince an investor to back you if you need start-up funds. Consider the following to get you started:

  • Set a budget to give you spare funds.
  • List all your commitments. Where can you cut back time?
  • List your strengths and weaknesses. Are there any gaps in your experience or knowledge?

Be honest with yourself and commit to working to achieve success. Set realistic goals to complete a business plan and market research.

Create and Understand Your Accounts

Let’s face it, money is important. You need to find out your rights, entitlements and responsibilities. Before committing to being a sole trader, limited company or partnership ensure you set up the best business structure to suit your vision for the business. Keeping up with expenses and payments is crucial you will need an accounting system to simplify the process and cut down the time you spend tearing your hair out over financials.

We recognised some months back that getting to grips with your accounts can appear to be a daunting undertaking. We talked to a number of small business owners and designed Account-Ability. It’s a simple and easy to follow 6 part video series designed specifically for business owners that need to brush up on their basic accounting skills.

Account-Ability takes just 40 minutes to complete , Check it out today on your mobile or your tablet and see how you can increase your knowledge and give your business every chance of success.

Lack of understanding of your business accounts can be stressful. Start here and eliminate that stress by understanding the basics of the accounts of your business.

Spread the word on social media

Once your business is ready for launch, get the word out on social media. It does not matter whether you are ready to trade yet or not. You want to create a hype. An interest to create a demand. Create a content strategy and post regularly. Use the analytical tools to analyse the results to see where you can do better.

These are just a few ideas to start a new business while working full time. While it is tough, it is not impossible to achieve your dream. Just take it one step at a time.i am the boss

Marc O'Dwyer

After completing a Graduate program in Marketing, Marc’s impressive sales career began at Allied Irish Banks, Pitney Bowes and Panasonic where he received numerous Irish and European sales performance awards and consistently exceeded targets and expectations. In 1992, Marc’s entrepreneurial spirit led him to set up his own business, Irish International Sales (IIS). Initially, this company was a reseller for Take 5 Accounts and Payroll software. Within four years, IIS became the largest reseller of Take 5 in Ireland, acquiring four other Take 5 resellers. He also found time to set up two mobile phone shops under the Cellular World brand and a web design company offering website design services for small businesses. In 2001, he bought the majority share in a small Irish software business, Big Red Book. At that time, the company was losing money. The company became profitable within two months, and Marc then acquired a payroll company to compliment Big Red Books Accounting products. In 2003, IIS were appointed as Channel Partners with SAP for their new SME product, SAP Business One. Marc sold his Take 5 business and concentrated on developing this new market for SAP As a result, by 2007, IIS was recognised as the largest Channel Partner for SAP in EMEA (Europe Middle East and Africa). In 2008, the IIS Sales Manager bought the Company from Marc in an MBO. He launched Big red cloud in June 2012, the online version of big red book, to date the company successfully converts 59% of trials into sales and the number of customers is growing rapidly. Marc continues to run both Big Red Book and Big Red Cloud which now support 75,000 businesses. He is a very keen sportsman, having played rugby for 20 years, represented Leinster at under 16 and under 20 levels, and league squash with Fitzwilliam Lawn Tennis Club for 10 years. Marc has competed in 11 Marathons, including the London and Boston Marathons, and has completed several Triathlons and Half Ironman races. He has also completed six Ironman Races in Austria(x2), Frankfurt (Germany), Nice (France) , Mallorca (Spain) and Copenhagen (Denmark)

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