5 Questions to Ask Before You Jump Into Entrepreneurship

Written by Corbett Barr

Entrepreneurship is all the rage. It’s everywhere.

In TV and movies (Shark Tank, Silcon Valley, The Social Network), in books (The Four Hour Workweek, The $100 Startup, Lean Startup), in podcasts (StartUp, The Smart Passive Income podcast), and of course in blogs (Techcrunch and countless others). Entrepreneurship has gone mainstream. There are at least 400 startup incubators and accelerator programs in existence.

Being an entrepreneur is glamorized, and for good reason. Startup companies are capable of transforming entire industries and of solving important global problems.

At a personal level, becoming an entrepreneur has the ability to create extreme wealth and personal freedom, along with a deep sense of purpose and meaning.

But all the amazingness that being an entrepreneur can deliver comes at a price. The simple truth is, not everyone is cut out to be an entrepreneur. Most people would be better off in a supporting role, or in joining a startup that already has some traction.

Even people who have the kind of personality and skills that are compatible with entreprenurship may not want to put up with all the baggage that comes with it.

Before you jump into entrepreneurship with both feet, here are 5 important questions to ask yourself:

  • Are you comfortable with uncertainty?

The only thing certain about building a business is uncertainty.

There are so many things you won’t have answers to. Should you choose this niche or that one? Is $40 the right price, or is $57.99? Should you hire Brandon or Katie? Should you look for outside financing, or are you better off bootstrapping? How much of your personal savings will you have to spend before you earn a salary?

Hundreds of questions. Thousands of potential answers. Zero certainty. To thrive as an entrepreneur, you have to master the art of making decisions quickly, based only on imperfect evidence.

  • Are you willing to sacrifice your income for a considerable period of time without a guarantee that it will pay off later?

Results are not guaranteed as an entrepreneur.

You could invest years of your life and much of your life’s savings and forego income you would earn as an employee somewhere else, only to end up with a complete failure. All of that time and money and sacrifice might earn you nothing more than a learning experience.

  • Do you have both the ability to see the big picture and the discipline to stay focused on the most critically important tasks in front of you, combined with the self awareness of when to switch between being CEO and worker bee?

You absolutely have to be able to act effectively in both roles. Strategy and action must be in balance or your business will never have a chance.

  • Can you tolerate maximum levels of anxiety and stress while being on a daily emotional roller coaster that vascillates between elation and despair?

Being an entrepreneur will be the most emotionally difficult challenge of your life. The action between your ears will be as important and trying as the work you do in building the business.

  • Will you remain religiously committed to building a successful business, despite endless roadblocks, setbacks, failures, dead ends and forced changes of direction?

Everything and everyone will seem to be telling you that you’re crazy for thinking you can build a successful business. Most of the time they’ll be right. Most businesses do fail, after all.

To succeed, you’ll have to ignore the setbacks and refuse to take “no” for an answer. You’ll have to finely tune your internal compass and trust it even when it seems stupid to do so.

Being an entrepreneur isn’t impossible, but it’s one of the greatest challenges most of us will ever face. Many will tell you that becoming an entrepreneur was the best decision of their entire lives. I’ll tell you that building a successful business is my life’s greatest accomplishment.

But if you’re not cut out to be an entrepreneur, there’s no shame in looking for a better path. Some other direction will be the right balance of freedom, purpose, challenge, meaning and wealth potential for you.

Before you make a decision either way, please ask yourself the five questions above, and be as honest as you can be about your answers.

What questions would you add to this list? What questions do you think are essential to ask yourself before becoming an entrepreneur?

And if you found this list helpful, would you share this post? We’re always grateful for your shares.

Earn a living doing something you love.

Grow an audience and get paid for your work as an independent creator. Fizzle is where creators come to learn, share and make progress toward their online dreams.

I’ve taken a lot of courses and been involved in several paid communities since I started my business, but I’ve never ever felt like anyone CARED as much about seeing my reach my goals as the Fizzle Team. They show up for me as much as I show up for myself. Thank you SO much, you guys!

Claire Pelletreau

📓 Articles & Announcements

  • 8 Experiments to Spice Up Your Podcasting Routine

    Is your podcast routine stuck in a rut?  If so, we’ve got just what you need!  Jane Portman from Userlist joins us on the blog today to share her podcasting genius.  Keep reading for 8 experiments you can try when your podcasting routine needs spicing

  • Introducing Fizzle 2.0

    Today is an exciting day for Fizzle. We’re announcing a complete refresh of Fizzle, including every aspect of our user experience – courses, content, live events and more. Since we first opened Fizzle in 2012, we’ve provided thousands of entrepreneurs and creators with training, coaching and community. Today, this refresh marks

  • The Secret to Creating Consistent Content (that nobody’s talking about)

    Hands up if you easily create consistent content week after week without fail. My guess? Since you’re reading this article, that’s probably not the case.   Despite what you may be thinking  – you’re not alone.  Lots of content

🎙️ Podcast Episodes

  • The EXITpreneur’s Playbook with Joe Valley

    Joe Valley is an Author, Guest Speaker, EXITpreneur, Advisor, and Partner at Quiet Light. He has also built, bought, or sold over half a dozen of his own companies. Over the last nine years, Joe has mentored thousands of entrepreneurs whose goal is to achieve their own eventual exit. He

  • R&D Tax Credits with Tiffany Bisconer

    Tiffany Bisconer is a CPA with over 20 years of accounting and tax experience. Tiffany worked with one of the top certified public accounting firms before becoming director of Acena Consulting. She combines her private industry and public accounting experience to work with CPA firms and directly with business owners

  • Behind the Scenes: Fizzle 2.0

    This has been an exciting month for Fizzle! We recently announced a complete refresh of Fizzle, including every aspect of our user experience – courses, content, live events and more. Since we first opened Fizzle in 2012, we’ve provided thousands of entrepreneurs and creators with training, coaching and community.