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11 Comments

What finally triggered you to quit your job and try and build something of your own?

I think lots of us have day jobs and do side projects for all sorts of reasons - fun, problem solving, curiosity etc - but some people eventually decide they want to turn this into a full time venture. The thing is, when are you ready? What makes you finally take the plunge? I've not done it yet myself, and I'm curious how others did so?

I've added a few options in the poll, but I imagine there is a huge range of answers, so let me know in the comments!

Note: Yes, I appreciate there are various degrees of privilege that make some of these options possible for some, and not for others...that's not the point.

What was the key factor in you quitting your day job and trying to go it alone?
  1. My side-hustle hit key revenue goal where I could sustain myself
  2. I couldn't handle another day working for someone else
  3. I'd saved up enough money to allow myself some runway to explore my idea full time
  4. I didn't have a job anyway, so this is basically what I do regardless
  5. I managed to raise investment to pursue my idea
Vote
  1. 4

    I was running an agency and building stuff for clients and getting great results (and revenue) for them but not really building my own wealth. I was building a project on the side, but client projects always took precedence and thus it was hard to ever really get it going picking it up and putting it down all the time.

    When CoVid hit, I just said fuck it. Closed the agency and went all-in on the startup. No regrets.

    1. 1

      Awesome, yeah...nothing like a global pandemic to reset your priorities!

  2. 4

    I was working a job I didn't like. After a family tragedy, I found myself performing very poorly on the job. My boss was patient with me, but that involved several days of me not getting any assignments, whatsoever.

    After a day of walking aimlessly around town, waiting for an assignment, I decided to quit and try something new. I didn't have a fully-formed startup idea yet, but I hit Upwork HARD and made more than I ever made at that job. A year later, I had a functioning business (PeopleFish) that I've been running for five years now.

    I distinctly remember that day walking around. Sometimes long times of isolation can clear the mind.

    1. 2

      Wow, thanks for sharing such a personal take on it Nick 🙂Seems like PeopleFish is doing great too, so obviously the right choice 👏

  3. 3

    Combination of:

    1. Tired of working for other people
    2. Wanting to build something that I deeply care about
    3. Having enough runway to quit and give it a try
  4. 2

    Got laid off during Covid lockdown.

    Used federal unemployment + stimulus checks to bootstrap Zlappo to ramen profitability.

    Been profitable and growing ever since, never needing to go back to a job again.

    1. 1

      Nice! Yeah I often wonder how many businesses were finally pursued due to pandemic related layoffs and financial assistance, must be substantial.

  5. 2

    I have a mix of options.

    So I have saved up enough to last for 24 months.

    Plus I've got a long-termish consulting gig and a couple of short-term freelance gigs which take up about half my work week.

    The other half I spend working on my own projects.

    I just took the plunge last month, so still figuring stuff out😅

    I've written at length about it on Twitter and my blog.

    1. 2

      That's a long time of saving, I tried that a bit before but then some other big expense always turns up (like buying new windows 😢). I'll check out the blog some point 😊

      1. 1

        yea its hard.
        But being able to live well within your means is a superpower.
        It will come in handy even when you have a lot of money.

  6. 2

    plus motivating pep talk from former founders

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