Self employment could be a step towards becoming an entrepreneur and building a business that works for you, creates jobs and allows you to do what you want when you want with a cushy pension to fall back on.

A lot of people who choose to go self employed, do so because of the perceived lifestyle, the freedom and possibly the desire to be obscenely wealthy.

In the UK  the numbers for those in self-employment are higher than at any point over past 40 years. The truth though, is that they work longer hours than their employed counterparts and now also earn 20% less than they did 7 years ago and earn 40% less than their employed equivalents.  There are over 4.5 million in self employment which represent nearly 15% of total employment. Scary Stats!

Despite these startling statistics, many of us want to be our own bosses. There are many ways into self employment which will be covered under three broad headings.

Assisted self-employment: 

This is a soft landing into going it alone.  The top one is a franchise, you get all the support and a system, which is fool proof. If you can read and are coachable then you will succeed and the figures support this. Franchises have a 90% success rate compared to all other businesses, however the entry costs are high with the more established ones demanding up to £200,000 to set up with additional monthly fees to pay.

The other one main one is network marketing also called Multi Level Marketing (MLM), this is a big arena for those going it alone, however statistics show that it has the highest failure rate with over  90% of members making less than $5,000 a year – Source: Business Students Focus on Ethics US.  It spans many industries including beauty, health & fitness, groceries to coin collecting.  You make money by selling the products/services and recruiting new members.  Do your research well if this is the route that you have decided upon.

Virtual Entrepreneurs:

These are the new breed of entrepreneurs and are generally consultants or retailers that have used the internet to leverage their businesses and use technology to reach and service markets in virtually any part of the world.  They include Coaches, Writers, Accountants, Web designers, Ebay/amazon sellers and Marketing Affiliates. With just a smart phone and a website you could be in business! Other powerful tools are social media that work well with a good marketing strategy.

Scaleable Businesses (Start Ups):

These have the potential to become BIG – the future Facebook, Amazon, Virgin and Google – that start very small, with little funding but a lot of hand work and vision.  You start small and work to create a proven product with a proven business model and then get investors to provide the finance to fund the resources to take their products and services into new markets and geographical areas.

These are entrepreneurs take a big risk as the success rate is quite low about – remember the bubble? ..But when they make it, everyone wishes they were in it from the get go.  Silicon Valley the technology start up city still has a failure rate of 90%! But when you win you win big!

Remember it isn’t just about having a good idea and product, it is how you market it. What’s your USP?