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Business start-up after redundancy

Author // Vega Sims Categories // Redundancy

Receiving the dreaded ‘At Risk’ letter has the ability to put your life into a complete tailspin (in my case this was a TUPE notice that we all knew would lead to redundancy). I remember the ice cold chill that flushed down my spine, followed by a feeling of complete disbelief that all my hard work over the last few years has been for nothing.  After I got over the initial shock and evaluated the situation objectively, things looked significantly better.  Most people will go through a phase of dismay, it’s normal.

What can a person do at a moment when it feels like your whole life has come crashing down? My advice is to take action immediately, dust your CV off and get your job search plan together, as soon as you receive news of redundancy. Being actively involved in your future at a point when things seem scary will help keep your spirits up. From my experience you are also more likely to secure a new job while you’re still in employment.

In the current job market I’d say that evaluating self employment options, if possible, will be an even better point of call. Think about it, if you successfully run your own business you’ll never receive an ‘At Risk’ letter again. Being in this position has given you the opportunity to broaden your horizons and be in charge of your own future.

Yes, business can be tough, but making excuses about why it can’t be done and planning to fail before you’ve even started, is not the way to financial freedom. Now is the time to take responsibility for your future, you’ve worked hard enough to pay your employers’ bonuses over the years.

Think about all the mornings when you wished you didn’t have to get up, the days at work when you dreamed of doing something different with your life. Do you really want to go back to a job where you run the risk of being underpaid, undervalued and underappreciated? You are now at a cross roads in your life where you have a chance to get up and make things happen, instead of hanging around, waiting for someone to save your finances, relationships, environment or whatever it may be.

I’m hoping that my somewhat tongue in cheek, to the point approach has given you a wake up call and that you are now seriously considering self-employment. If you are, your next question is probably; what type of business can I possibly start?

When considering what type of business to start, I think, it is very important to be absolutely passionate about what you’re making or doing, so make a list of all the things you love doing, as well as any possible gaps in the market. A business driven by a passion for something, coupled with a commitment to serving others, has more potential of survival. Very often successful businesses have emerged because of someone’s passion to serve a market segment better or to add more value to customers. Just because there are businesses doing the same thing already does not mean that your chosen sector can’t do with a little competition.

Once you have a list of ideas together, do a bit of research to see which option will have the best potential. Then if you think you’ve got a winner, start writing your business plan. At this point there are a few organisations that can help you develop your idea these include organisations like WENTA, YTKO, Enterprising Women, NWES or someone similar who may be able to provide free advice.

Considering that unemployment is at an all time high, there is still a massive gap in the market ready for someone to fill. Now is the time for your life to ‘finally take off’ so pull your finger out, stop procrastinating and get cracking on that business plan.

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Vega Sims

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