Nurturing the Money Tree: Owning a Small Business- Part 2

Nurturing the Money Tree: Owning a Small Business- Part 2

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Image: – – Macho Spouse

 

DirectionDivaLogo.jpgIn Part 1 of Nurturing the Money Tree we chatted about creating income by working for someone else. But if you are like me, maybe working for someone else isn't for you, and many military spouses actually choose to own their own businesses.  I know I did.

This option gives them the flexibility and control that they are looking for while building something for their future at the same time.  Being a business owner has some great advantages, but if you don't know what you are getting into and you don't have a plan of action it can quickly take over your life or worse leave you in a financial pickle.


JudyDavis.jpgAs a coach for military small business owners, I work with people at all different levels of their business, some are thinking about taking the plunge, others have jumped in and even a few that come to me when they feel as if their ship is sinking.  Without exception they all work hard and are surprised at what it takes to own and operate a business from home.  Here are some of the pro's and con's to consider before you take the plunge.

 

Pro's:

  • Your schedule is flexible.  I think the greatest aspect of owning my own business as a military spouse is that family for the most part I have the ability to arrange my schedule around my.  If I know of a training or deployment coming up I can plan my work around it, if my child gets sick I'm not looking for someone to cover my shift at the last-minute.  Flexibility in when I work is often how I am able to balance all the changes and transitions that happen in our crazy life as a military family, and I'm grateful that I am able to shift my schedule to fit my life.
  • You are your own boss. No more answering to someone else's demands, dealing with cranky management, mandatory overtime or taking orders especially when they don't make sense. Owning your own business allows you to be in charge and make choices on how things run and what happens on a day-to-day basis.
  • Your business moves with you. I think this is one of the biggest perks of having a business when you are in the military, frequent moves don't affect you at all.
  • You decide when and where you work. No more long commutes, early start times or late night inventories. When you are the boss, you decide when, where and how you will work.
  • You can get a lot done in your jammies and cozy slippers….Just saying J

Con's:

  • The buck stops with you. A pro and a con actually, but when you are the business owner you are responsible with the success or failure of your business. You are the one who makes the decisions and on whose shoulder the responsibility falls. It's a pro when all is going well, but can quickly become a con if you hit some rough patches (which we all eventually do).
  • You are the financial end all be all. There is no guaranteed income when you work for yourself, and often there is a fairly long learning curve before any business begins to make a profit. And as with any business there will be good months and bad months so proper planning and financial responsibility are critical to success.
  • If you aren't careful it can take over your life. For most of us the reason we start a business is because we are passionate about something enough to put aside the fears and take a chance on a dream. But if we don't find a way to balance our “business life” with our personal life it can shift from an incredible dream to a nightmare that creates stress, chaos and financial hardship.
  • Accountability. When you own your own business, the only person that you are accountable is to yourself. You decide what time to start or how hard you work and you are the one who learns that procrastination is not a business owner's friend. You are the person who decides what tasks get done and what deadlines get met, and you are the one who makes the decision about whether to take a personal day. There is no one else that accountable for the success or failure of your bottom line except you.

About the Author:  Judy Davis is a great friend and promoter of Macho Spouse and male military spouses everywhere.  She is a motivational speaker, author, and blogger who provides support to the military community all over the world.  You can find out more about her, read her blogs, or book her as a speaker at http://thedirectiondiva.com/   

See also...

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2015 'Thank You' and Year In Review

malemilitaryspouse_2015_YIRIt's the holiday season and to me that means spending time with family and friends while reflecting on the year that was. How many had a good year? How many of you feel as if you've accomplished, overcome, loved and laughed as much as possible? There have been a few bad years in my life where I just wanted the damn thing to finish so I could start fresh with a clean slate, it's a mindset, but we all know that reality doesn't work that way. I usually judge my life in a similar way as to how we judge football coaches, “what have you done for me lately.” My year was a good one, a net-positive. So congratulations, you get “happy Chris,” or at least “less grumpy and sarcastic Chris.”

The tremendous amount of progress within the male military spouse community is one reason why 2015 was a good year. Guys, we're finally starting to get some recognition. People, businesses, and other organizations are starting to approach us and ask for our input, insight, and yes, our business. Marketers are finally recognizing that we are a demographic worth pursuing; just check out this holiday spot from Toys R Us. (I just bought 4 gift cards for my nieces from them because of this commercial.)

In 2015, Macho Spouse was approached by the Sonoran Desert Institute's School of Firearms Technology to hold the first ever “Male Military Spouse Appreciation Day” where SDI donated a full-tuition scholarship to their popular Gunsmithing certificate course. (Male military spouses are a large demographic for them.) USAA asked for our participation to help raise awareness on the importance of life insurance during “Life Insurance Awareness Month.” Yeah, I didn't know that month existed before this opportunity either, but USAA sure knows that we exist! And Marriott really knocked us off our feet when they offered several nights worth of hotel stays in return for a few reviews on their TownePlace Suites properties. TownePlace Suites made it very clear that they are interested in helping military families who are on the road, from PCSing to family vacations, TownePlace Suites wants our business!  And it's not like this is some shabby hotel chain guys, their rooms are usually very spacious, clean, come with fully equiped kitchens, and hot breakfasts.  I was surprised to learn how many were actuallyl located near military installations, which makes them a great temporary housing option, or vacation get-a-way. In full disclosure, I dispersed their generous offering quietly among those guys who have helped keep Macho Spouse up and running over the last few years. We don't make any money here, so when a top-notch organization such as Marriott offers us some swag, I like to spread it out amongst our volunteers first. If you want access to some of this cool stuff, contact me and be prepared to help build our community. But while I'm speaking of TownePlace Suites, you guys should check them out because they're really showing their appreciation and commitment to our military community! That goes for USAA and Sonoran Desert Institute as well, these organizations aren't just talking about supporting male military spouses, they're actually doing it. So let's not forget to return this generosity in 2016.

While I'm patting others on the back, I can't forget the amazing content NextGen Military Spouse, Military.com/SpouseBuzz, and Military Spouse delivered on behalf of male military spouses in 2015. When I started Macho Spouse in late 2011/early 2012, there was nearly nothing…nothing, written for or about us male military spouses. No blogs, no websites, no Facebook pages, no nothing. Now look at us, male spouses are popping up everywhere! (We've probably had absolutely nothing to do with this trend, but I will take full credit.) So despite terrorism, politics, war, and racial unrest, life hasn't been all bad this year. It's been good enough for me to crack a cold one, light a cigar, sit back and reflect on how far we've come and how many goals are still left to accomplish. Don't worry, I won't be consuming and driving while reflecting, Dana and I have already booked our New Year's Eve room at the San Antonio Riverwalk TownePlace Suites. Happy 2015 everyone, have a safe holiday season!

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Military Spouse Appreciation Day Virtual Career Fair by Veteran Recruiting Services

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Did you know that there are virtual career fairs held that allow you to meet and interact with recruiters from the comfort of your own home? Check out this press release from Veteran Recruiting Services about an upcoming virtual career fair for military spouses.

PHILADELPHIA, May 7, 2013 -- /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- Veteran Recruiting Services, the recognized leader of virtual career fairs for the military community is pleased to host the Military Spouse Appreciation Day Virtual Career Fair in support of the White House Joining Forces Initiative on May 10th.

Military Spouses from all over the world with have an opportunity to meet and interact live with recruiters in the virtual career fair, and from the comfort and convenience of their home or office. Each employer will have a virtual booth that will provide everything the spouse will need to consider when looking at their next career choice.

Thirty of America's leading employers will participate including: 24 Hour Fitness, Aetna, Airgas, Citi, Comerica Bank, Convergys, DaVita, DialAmerica, DISH, Exelon, Graybar, Intercontinental Hotels Group, Lowe's, Military Spouse Employment Partnership, Nordstrom, Penske, Pfizer, Progressive, Sears Holdings Corporation, The Mission Continues, Travelers, TSA, USAA, Union Pacific Railroad, Verizon, Volt, Walgreens, Waste Management, Wells Fargo, and Xerox.

Military Spouse Appreciation Day

Friday, May 10th

1:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Join us for a great event exclusively for Military Spouses, and be entered to win some great prizes such as;

$50 Visa gift cards every 30 minutes

$200 Coach gift card

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Register Here