All The Income, None of The Work?

by Kelvin Davis

Owning a business is one of the best ways to move away from employment and exit the rat race. The clincher? You need to set up your business to run successfully even without you on its helm. Without this element built into your venture you are just changing your money source but not taking the path towards financial freedom.

A business might earn more than your usual 8-5 job but it would also require you to work almost impossible hours. Being an entrepreneur means being intimately involved with your business venture. While start-ups demand a lot of your time, you cannot go on working like that forever. If you end up doing so, what’s the point of the transition?

There is a better plan.

Create a scalable business

Scalable businesses have two very distinct features:

  1. The cost to earn a dollar must decrease as the venture moves forward with its operation. The more you sell your product/service, the more you should earn from the business as the cost to deliver decreases over time.
  2. A scalable business must be able to operate on a system you have set up, allowing you to move out in the future, let someone take over for you, and allow it to operate following the standards you have set beforehand.

Tech businesses are one of the most popular scalable enterprises in the world. Amazon, Facebook, Apple and Alibaba are some examples of very scalable money making “machines”.

Where to start: decide on your entrepreneurial goals

To simplify, dig deep for the things that make you happy and then integrate that to your business idea. Understand your purpose because you will be needing that when the going gets tough. What am I really good at? What is my passion in life? How will I make money from my inherent skills and inclinations?

These questions can help you narrow your business ideas. If you are torn between multiple opportunities, this can help you qualify your chances of achieving sustainable success.

If you are good at social media marketing, you can start from there. Perhaps offer your services to local businesses that are not yet engaging audiences on social channels. Remember there are no ventures that have zero problems. The key to success is building a venture around problems you love to solve.

Build a system, train people

Your business is now up and running. Because you are just starting out, you are taking on the leadership role. You must however run the business just to understand its operational necessities. The next step is to start documenting processes, making manuals, clarifying job roles, providing solutions to make day to day tasks efficient.

Then you start training people. If you are operating your business on your own, start training your “junior”. Make sure you teach your trainee how things are done and how you want the services delivered. This can mean you need to impart not just skill but also values and company culture.

When you think your successor is ready, pass on the leadership role. Always remind yourself not to micromanage. Allow your team to have some space to work effectively. Just remind them of the system you have already set and the importance of sticking to that. As to execution details, leave it all to them.

Now that you are free to do whatever you want, you can now enjoy the profits of your business, without lifting a finger to earn it.