Most people probably contemplate starting a business at some point in their lives, even if it’s just for a second. Perhaps you have a brilliant idea or you’re fed up of working for yourself, and the idea of running a company sounds like just the thing. But, there’s another option to starting a business that has many of the same freedom yet without some of the risks. Becoming a sales representative is a bit like running a franchise. You can work for yourself representing another business and be in control of your hours without having to come up with a solid business idea. So, which is the better option: starting your own business or becoming a sales representative?
When you start your own business, you’re taking a big risk. Of course, you will have done some market research to find out if your product or service is likely to be successful. But, there are no guarantees in any industry. And, succeeding involves a combination of timing, skill and dedication. If you decide to become a sales representative for an existing company, you’ll still have the pleasure of running a home-based business. However, you can research them before you decide to join. You still need to put in the time and skills to succeed, but you don’t have to worry about a product that you know already sells.
To run either a business you’ve set up from scratch or one as a sales rep, you need to be willing to put in the time. Although people talk about self-employment as if it’s freedom from a nine-to-five job, the reality is different. In truth, self-employed people often work much more than the 35 to 40 hours a week that those in a regular office job. But, you do get the flexibility of choosing when you take time off. The difference between launching a brand new business and buying into an existing one is what you dedicate your time too. As a sales representative, you can concentrate on sales whereas, as an independent business owner, you need to have your fingers in several different pies.
If you want to be a sales representative, you often have to pay a small amount for a starter pack to get started. But, that’s nothing compared to how much you may have to invest in a brand new business. From the moment you have an idea, you need to think about how to raise the capital to launch your company. Some businesses can be started at very low cost, but many can’t get off the ground without a significant amount of money.
Any successful business person needs to be a good communicator. But, if you want to be a sales rep, you need to be overflowing with communication and sales skills. If you start a new business, you at least have the option of paying someone else to handle the things you’re not good at. If you want to be a sales representative, you need to love talking to people and have a particular set of skills.
There are pros and cons to both launching a new business and becoming an independent sales representative… which is best for you?
Photo by Thomas Lefebvre
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