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How to be your own boss in 2022

Thu Jan 06 2022
John Clarke, MENTA business coach and trainer

How to be your own boss in 2022. What is ‘Massive Monday’? It refers to the first working Monday of the new year and is the day that most people look for a new role in the UK. Figures show that 1 in 5 people look for a new job in January. But it isn’t just workers looking for new jobs, it follows that it is a boom time for many of us to make the leap into being our own boss. There are many reasons that you might choose to become self-employed, a freelancer or a sole trader. 

There is a creative freedom in making your own decisions. You can often choose your location which means you do not have to commute. You set your own hours and your earning capacity can often be higher. 

Currently around 421,000 people are self-employed in the East of England. However, it is important to remember that you are solely responsible for your own success which can be daunting. 

You are the boss and make all the decisions, often without a colleague to bounce off, but that doesn’t mean you don’t need help or guidance. Transitioning from an office or employed status can mean you feel isolated to begin with. 

Find your local network. Social media can be a good way to access other sole traders or freelancers in your area. Getting advice from people already working in this way can also be useful. There are many business support groups on Facebook and LinkedIn which are free to join.

When starting out on your own it is important to access support. More importantly to know where to go to access it. It is likely that you will already be an expert in the business or the service you offer. However, to be a successful sole trader or freelancer means you must have knowledge of other areas of running a business. For example, marketing, finance, taxation, overheads. You will need to learn these skills as you grow your business. 

Marketing yourself or your service is vitally important for a new business or freelancer, if you don’t get your service or product out into the marketplace, people won’t know it is there, you could fail before you start. It is useful to understand your customer base. Which social media sites do they frequent, what papers do they read, how do they generally access information? Once you have an idea of this you can target those areas with your marketing and get your product to the right people. It may be that you need to know what marketing or advertising language to use when marketing your product. 

There are MENTA courses to help with this. If you do need help learning marketing basics or how to use social media, then there are various online courses available here in Norfolk and Suffolk. Administration and paperwork are also a big consideration when starting out and it may not be something you are naturally good at or understand. Taxation and legal requirements can also be a minefield at the beginning. Rest assured there is always help at hand. There are also lots of local business support services you can access like the ones MENTA offer across Norfolk and Suffolk. 

Email bookings@menta.org.uk to see how you can receive FREE business planning and support.
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