Hey Indie Hackers,
This is my first week as a full-time founder, as I recently quit my cushy finance job to start my own business!
If you're considering quitting your own job to go full-time on your side project, you may find my decision-making framework helpful.
Here's a breakdown detailing:
Let's get into it!
I went to school for Hotel Administration - essentially a business degree through the lens of hospitality. I didn't know what I wanted to do, but I knew I wanted to serve others.
As I progressed through college, banking/consulting grew wildly popular with my peers.
I was in the top of my class, excelling in finance, accounting, and real estate classes.
Banks were trendy. They were socially accepted. They paid well and had great benefits. I was able to convince myself that financial analysis was something I enjoyed.
I've spoken with representatives of various other disciplines within finance. It's not just the team I was on - no matter how hard I tried, I could not get excited about corporate finance. It just wasn't for me.
Meanwhile, I found myself thinking about my startup whenever I had the time. I thought about it in the shower. I thought about it before going to sleep at night. I started zoning out of meetings at work to think about it.
I started sneaking in work at my startup whenever I got the chance. People from around the world were reaching out to me, asking me when I was going to launch.
The more I thought about it, the more it became clear that corporate finance was not the place for me.
When I examined the skills I consider to be my "superpowers" - the ones I am exceptionally good at, the ones that set me apart from others - they didn't align with corporate finance.
These skills include:
I realized that if I spent the next 5 years of my life creating financial projections, I would become exceedingly good at creating financial projections while becoming less good at other things.
I didn't want to lose my superpowers. That prospect terrified me.
Instead, I wanted to do something that would allow me to leverage my superpowers to the greatest extent possible. Doing so would allow me to create the most value.
And in my case, my superpowers did not align with the job I was in.
Coming from a background of excessive overachievement, I deeply wanted the support of my parents in order to feel good about this decision. I know how hard they worked to put me into a great school, and I recognized that they felt my finance job was successful and secure.
When I told them about my desire to quit my job in favor of working for myself, they were concerned.
As parents, they wanted me to be safe and to have a successful future. But they also wanted me to be able to reach my full potential.
When I explained that my skills were being underutilized, that I felt stifled, they understood that my job was not the best fit for me.
After I explained my thought process and my plans, they even offered to let me stay with them while I figured things out.
This was huge.
No matter how much you want to leave a job, you can't do so if you can't afford to live without your income.
I have around $30K total right now. Most of it is invested in stocks and crypto, but it's liquid enough to take out if needed.
But by leaving my job within a year from starting, I would need to return the $10K signing/relocation bonus I received.
This would leave me with $20K.
This would leave me with $1,450/mo of expenses, or $17,400/yr.
I wanted to give myself 1 full year to see if I could make it on my own. If I drained my bank account, I would still be left with $2,600.
It would be cutting it close, but I was resolved to make the investment in myself, to give myself and my startup a chance.
When my parents came in with the absolutely gift of letting me stay with them rent-free, it strengthened my resolve to take the leap.
Ultimately, no one can tell you how to live your life. But I'd recommend examining your own Passions, Skillset, Support, and Financials when making your decision.
And when it comes to deathbed regrets, very few people regret things they did. Most people regret things they didn't do.
And ultimately, life is too short to do something you don't love!
If you liked this post, follow me on Twitter!
If you want to hear a more complete rundown of what went into this decision (and a little motivation for you if you're on the fence about quitting your own job), you can check out my YouTube video!