How to leave the corporate world for your own startup business

David Adamick
14 October 2022
min read

They're often referred to as 'corporate refugees.' The skilled and successful who've become disillusioned with the 9-to-5, the obligatory office habitation, the commuting, the corporate ladder. Perhaps you're among them or in some ironic way aspire to be.

If so - particularly if you're one with the ideas, acumen and ambitions required for a successful startup - this blog post is for you, as well as for what US statistics confirm is a growing number of such 'refugees'.

Well, you've read this far. You must be interested. Interested, that is, in being your own boss and building something in which you'll find far more satisfaction and value.

So, let's go through some helpful steps to guide you out of your corporate job and encourage you further into that startup venture you've been daydreaming about.

What are you leaving for?

You may think you've already answered the question - but have you? Often the abstract excitement that comes at the advent of any new venture fuels the conviction that the right decision has been taken. However, it's important you've also taken enough steps back to give your intentions a thorough analysis.

Yes, looking before you leap applies here. Especially when considering a venture in the startup world where statistics show a less-than-encouraging 90% failure rate among new businesses.

So ask yourself again whether you truly have the aptitude to go it alone or whether your daydream is merely serving as an escape route from a tired routine. Just as often, unidentified career dissatisfaction can lead to ill-considered career manoeuvres.

Above all, be clear on the realities that come with any new business: uncertain income, a tough first couple of years, longer, harder working hours and none of the benefits that came with corporate life (health, medical, retirement, etc.).

The benefits of running your own business

But now that you've since recognised you've got the skills, resources and vision to go the distance (those corporate years weren't for nothing!), here are some benefits you can look forward to as a new startup business owner:

  • financial independence

  • the ongoing application of previously gained professional experience and knowledge

  • a customized work-life vs personal-life routine

  • flexibility/working remotely

  • a heightened sense of professional purpose

  • the creation of an asset that will have future value

  • a greater, more genuine passion to pursue

  • greater control over career direction

  • full benefits of any personal investment put into the business

  • job creation / community contribution

  • greater control over your own destiny

Not a bad trade-off, one may argue. One which entrepreneurship increasingly considers as more significant earnings.

Talk to other entrepreneurs - work your network

Work your current network and speak to other potential business owners who similarly looking to leave the corporate world. They too can use moral support!

Seek out those who've made the leap. Consult any business contacts you may have who've made the transition themselves (LinkedIn is a great place to start). He or she may have founded a startup independently or currently work for one.

Whichever, try to gain some airtime for both feedback and advice. Research the working culture, the required skills and personality traits that are typical to a successful startup venture.

Above all, ask these entrepreneurs why they too had decided to leave the corporate world. It's likely you'll find their explanations a source of much encouragement and inspiration.

Using the skills you've earned

Remember that you remain your best resource. The skills you developed in your former corporate career (project management, organizational skills, managing employees, etc.) will suddenly become all the more indispensable. And soon, all the more finely tuned.

Validate Your Business Proposition

Now, to the heart of the matter. Put most bluntly, you'll soon no longer have a new entrepreneurial career in the startup world if you don't validate your business idea first.

Startups offering the market a product it doesn't want is one of the main reasons for that ominous 90% figure mentioned earlier.

Therefore, you must determine beforehand whether potential customers will be willing to pay for your product or service.

Validate with SDH

This is where Startup House can help. Our seasoned experience in working with aspiring startup founders will ensure you're standing on the solid ground necessary for moving your venture forward.

This means experience with professionals having the right skills and financial wherewithal and resources. Professionals who'd also sought the corporate career exit sign but were also needing market realities to be more sharply defined for them.

Professionals who went on to enjoy considerable success.

How we help get your startup started

We'll take you through the necessary steps for verifying that your idea has potential and that your journey toward realizing it begins in the right direction.

This will mean initially establishing whether there is a market for your business and if so, identifying and defining the personas who make up its target audience.

We will help you determine the functionality of your product as well as analyze the potential competition it will face in the marketplace.

We can offer guidance on how and where to 'pitch' your proposition and attract funding from potential investors.

Crucially, we will guide you in building your product prototype and/or developing a minimum viable product (MVP) of your idea to test on real users, determine the cost involved in its development and identify how much customers will be willing to pay for it.

From here, you'll be on your way to product launch and enjoying your first sales.

For a more detailed, in-depth outline of how to validate your idea and ensure your startup is at its most competitive, check out our recent blog on product idea validation.

Start your entrepreneurship here

So, if you've got an idea about starting a business, perhaps now is the time to make that career change you've been thinking about. Perhaps it's time to redefine what 'success' means to you. Startup House can help you do this.

Having successfully created multiple startup projects, we're intimately familiar with every stage of the product life cycle and indeed what the journey to success looks like.

We have the in-depth knowledge, refined expertise and the right services to see that your startup business is best poised to benefit in this current surge in entrepreneurship and beyond.

This means that when you work with us, you don’t need any technical knowledge or prior understanding of the startup world. You won't even need your own staff. 

Startup House has you covered. So have another think about being your own boss. Then contact us and let us into your future.

Let's talk!

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