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Self employment

Positive attitudes are needed to cope with the challenges of self-employment.

Wider skills for employability
Answer Yes or No for each of the following skills. Think of examples that demonstrate your answer. Are you:

     

Flexible Adaptable Able to transfer skills Able to take risks Good at planning Optimistic

Wider Skills -> Keep a record.

If you're thinking about self-employment you NEED to be:
     
prepared to be flexible and not 'status conscious' willing to take short term work keen to accumulate experience positive in accepting changes of direction unafraid to learn and practice new skills willing to recognise and seize new opportunities

Some things are outside our control but we can prepare for self-employment by developing skills to cope with:

1. Intermittent work. 2. Unpredictable income. 3. Personal organisation. 4. Networking 5. Flexible working hours
Check yourself out first by looking at the Self Assessment section.

Here are some useful ideas if you're thinking of becoming self-employed.
Have you thought about...

1. What pension you already receive? 2. How you will top up your pension? 3. Whether you will have a "lump sum"? 4. Whether you need help from an accountant? 5. Whether you have the necessary contacts and networks? 6. How much it will cost to set yourself up in business?

and consultations. The following list shows just some of the questions that are answered:  How do I choose a location for my business?  How easy is it to borrow money for a new business?  If I am unemployed. Department for Trade and Industry Help for small businesses and new businesses. These are just some of the things you should consider if you're going to start up on your own. Setting up a small business: Do your homework: If you are setting up a small business there is information available to help.7. other taxes and duties. trading on the Internet. You might be considering this because of redundancy or early retirement. rates of exchange. This site provides numerous links to a wide variety of related topics. There are two main types of self-employment: 1. Each course looks at a specific business issue. The Inland Revenue website features news and information on tax and national insurance matters in the United Kingdom. HM Customs and Excise provides information on VAT. Whether you can cope with an irregular income/cash flow? 10. What equipment you will need? 8. so you can tailor your learning according to your immediate needs. In any case . Look in the telephone directory for your local Learning and Skills Council. The Small Business Service is a government agency to help you kick-start the process of starting your own business. Starting up a small business: you might do this on your own or with a colleague or partner. Whether you are sufficiently self. importing.motivated to manage your own business? Useful ideas -> Keep a record. Working as an independent freelancer as a consultant or 'portfolio worker'. exporting and EC trade. will I lose my benefits if I start a business? .take advice from the experts and also from people who have already taken this step. 2. Whether you have the skills to manage your finances? 9. You might just want the freedom to be 'freelance'. learndirect have designed flexible learning packages that can be used when you want them. electronic services. Ask for the Business Adviser and you will be given help in starting up your business.

 what sources (e. insurance. basic financial and legal details . journals) you need in order to keep up to date and as a means of finding work. However. And do your market research first to be sure that your service or product is financially viable! Freelance portfolio working Do your homework: You will need to understand the practical implications of working as a freelancer. It saves money and it gives you time to try out your business ideas before making any heavy investment or taking out a loan for office space. Practical Resources Think about these practical considerations:  starting up or running your business may involve money for classes or travel.g. speak to your local council's Planning Department. . telephone. there may be reasons why this is not possible:       lack of space mortgage agreements local authority restrictions tax implications neighbours impractical working environment You may have to look for alternative accommodation. on your own. including different ways of freelancing e.  self-marketing . Should I work from home? Accommodation A lot of people work from home in the early stages of starting their business.g.stationery. Take advantage of all the advice available and the start-up grants which small businesses can attract.both for support and as a means of finding work. access to a computer / e-mail / internet. networking . Think about these key issues:     the importance of planning and time management. and understanding a contract. If you are undecided about what is best for you. brochure / photos.I. record of work (you might produce some or all of this yourself). pooling resources or working as a collective. choosing an accountant. CV(s). tax and N.including opening a bank account. costing work and realistic rates of pay. business cards.

Why do I need a network?  To help you get to know more about a particular career or promotional possibility and to get to know people already working in that field. Ask them these questions: 1. medium and long term growth. How can you improve your networks? Look at these questions: 1.making time to improve your own skills and knowledge in your chosen and related fields  Networking . How can you plan for a regular supply of work and income? 6. Networking is vital if you are self-employed. contingency and investment planning.I. Who can help me? List all your family and friends and their jobs or contacts. How do you know what to charge? Do you always charge the same? Whether you want to set up a small business or go freelance you should first:  draw up a simple budget projection .income & expenditure statement with tax / N. 2. How do you get enough work? 4. It will help if you can find out about the working lifestyles of at least three freelance workers.getting work and sustaining yourself. How can they help you?  Think creatively about past and present contacts . Be sure to include target setting for short. What equipment do you need and how much did it cost you? 3.Attitudes and survival skills Freelancers need to manage themselves.how you might use them in different ways if work is not going according to plan and you need to find additional sources of income  Ensuring that you continue to develop .ways to ensure you keep on task and meet deadlines  Morale .and how long have you worked this way? 2.how to make sure you can enjoy success without becoming over-confident and how to deal with failures and rejections without losing self-confidence and personal drive  Recognising the full range of skills you have . noting likely start-up and relevant running costs  draw up a draft one-year business plan based on projected income and expenditure  identify what marketing strategies can be used to gain clients and maintain contacts  'map' your own aspirations.which of these can be of help? . Be realistic about your own strengths and weaknesses when estimating your potential for success. aptitudes and attitudes. How useful is an accountant in helping manage the financial side of your work? 5. Why did you go freelance . What is it like to be a freelancer? You will need to explore this question by thinking about:  Personal discipline .

Initiate: always be proactive. so show an interest. 4. Don't let the contacts go "cold". 3.  Ask a few leading questions about how they managed to get in their chosen career. and collect useful information yourself. There are many benefits but be sure you have weighed up the costs too before taking this step. What do I want to achieve by networking?  Think about the questions you want to ask the people you choose. Always thank people for their time. . 5. You might follow up with a telephone call if other things occur to you after a meeting.  Make them feel important by asking them about their work . How will I make contact?     It should be easy with family members.there might be a short-term contract they can offer. 5.  Don't finish a contract without flagging up interest in the next one. Inform: let others know what you want.people like to talk to each other.  Talk to them about your plans. 3. Influence: build up your confidence in your judgment. Look through your address book and diaries to see if there is anyone useful you might have forgotten. With other people you can phone them or use e-mail. How can I build on my previous contacts?  Keep in touch. Improve: grow your network and make more useful contacts to help you succeed in achieving your goals. 4. 2. Impact: don't miss a chance to make a positive impression. Many more people are finding success as self-employed workers. Learn the 5 'I's of networking: How will you do the following? 1.  Show interest in what they are doing .