Truffle is like a lot of small start ups that have seen an opportunity in the market and acted on it. A small independent business which has sprouted up due to many factors including escaping the big corporate world, trying to add more value both personally and to their customers / clients and ultimately carve out a new and unique offering to a market.
Ours is a business grown from the love of the creative industries by two people who want to make recruitment less of a “car salesman industry” and more of a “career consultancy business,” creating good karma.
Since starting the business over two years ago we’ve experienced the highly interesting and innovative components which go in to creating a brand and making a business run, which includes unimaginable amount of mundane tasks which a business could not live without.
Having a business creates a different lifestyle, with varying priorities and crazy ‘working’ hours.
We’ve noticed the huge differences between working for yourselves compared to working for someone else and we’ve put together a pros and cons list for anyone thinking of taking the leap!
1. You are your own boss – you set your own expectations working on your own strengths and create targets that work for you. No sales targets, no ridiculous meetings about meetings, no overbearing manager breathing down your neck – Freedom is yours…!
2. You have control over finance – It’s great to see the profit coming in and be able to control what goes out. Being in control of spend, sign off, margins, negotiations, bottom line and the overall financial decision making, is a very rewarding process
3. You can take any day off – spend afternoons drinking in the sun, have half days to spend time with your other half / friends / kiddies… etc. (note: remember your business is you and won’t function without you.)
4. Everywhere is your office – if you’re lucky enough to have a business that you can run from online, like our own, it means you can work from anywhere – in the whole world! You can be in Starbucks in Oxford Circus or at the top of a skyscraper in New York, as long as you have wifi you can run the business from there.
5. You can choose the clients you work with – this really is a luxury, and something that Truffle has built its business on. Only working with people you want to work with, who have good ethics and high standards.
6. You can choose the people you work with – you can build a team of like-minded people – no office politics, no bullshit.
7. You can create your own brand and with that a brand ethos – this is super fun, telling your story and building your values, designing a logo, colour palette, website…etc. We loved this process!
1. You are your own boss – you now impose crazy targets on yourself and (if you’re anything like me) will criticise and push yourself harder than any boss would.
2. You have control over finance – managing finances, negotiating with suppliers, paying /sending / chasing invoices, budgets, forecasting, vat bills, quarter ends, end of years, the so called ‘black art’ of accountancy, all of this now falls within YOUR remit. This can scare the noodles out of some people – but don’t worry you will be a pro by the time you’re a year in!
3. You will not have any holiday pay / maternity leave / sick pay – this isn’t entirely true, it’s up to you as a director to decide how much you pay yourself out of the company, but my guess is that if you’re not at work then you won’t be making any money to pay yourself.
4. Never being able to ‘log off’ from work – never again will you finish work at 6pm and actually stop working, your brand is integrated into your soul. There is no “home time”! You are now switched on 24/7.
5. You will not get paid if you do a shit job – you cannot coast! I hear this term a lot in recruitment; you can’t do bugger all and expect to be paid at the end of the month.
6. People who are not self employed will never understand – your friends / other half / parents will not understand that you are actually at work full time and not available at their beck and call. They expect you are able to run errands for them / pick the kids up from school / bunk off for the day with them / be available all day long. We’re at work people!!
7. Office party is down to two – or three in our case. No more glamorous corporate do’s with tons of free booze – no no no – you’d much rather save those pennies for a rainy day or to give yourself a little bonus 😉
This list could go on and on and on…. I literally had to cut it down to 7 each. As you can see many of the Pros are actually Cons too!
We’d love your comments too….. !!
How are you finding it? Is anyone thinking of starting a business or have you just started one? What are the joys and what are the pitfalls?