Go From Earning Minimum Wage to Launching a Startup

Go From Earning Minimum Wage to Launching a Startup
  • Opening Intro -

    When you're slogging through college classes and spending endless hours on homework assignments, professional success can feel like it's a lifetime away.

    However, there's no reason why you need to put your entrepreneurial ambitions on hold while you're getting your degree.


If you have plans to create a startup — or better yet, more than one startup — here are some thoughts and considerations on how to start the process, even while you’re still in college and working a minimum wage job on the side.

Never Count Yourself Out

It may sound cliche, but one of the key aspects that define entrepreneurs from others is the simple fact that they’re never down for the count. Do they have mistakes? Sure. Do they suffer setbacks? Of course. However, rather than letting these negative events stop them, a business-savvy person simply allows obstacles to fuel the fire and add to that desire for ultimate success.

When it comes to seeding your startup in college, this attitude is critical. It’s easy to shrug your shoulders and give up on, or at least significantly delay, your dream, particularly when you look at your minimum wage, part-time paycheck and consider all of the bills you’re incurring while you’re in school.

If you’re serious about starting your own company, there are multiple ways that you can save up, even with minimum wage in order to finance your ultimate business success.

For example, you can do the following:

  1. Use your natural financial restraints to set reasonable goals and make strategic purchasing decisions.
  2. Work studiously to avoid going into unnecessary debt.
  3. Pick up a side gig to help increase your cash flow.
  4. Look into government assistance and small business loans if necessary.

The point is, don’t use your current circumstances to count yourself out. Instead, use your entrepreneurial creativity to overcome the challenges. You’ll appreciate this problem-solving practice many times over as you grow your businesses in the future.

Take Risks — Learn From Mistakes

Another key aspect to finding business success is boldly taking risks and then learning from your mistakes. If you’re a doer, this may sound like easy advice, but be careful. It isn’t an excuse to act rashly or recklessly. It’s an encouragement to act boldly when the right time comes.

For instance, if you have nothing more than a germ of a business idea, this likely isn’t the time to take out a $50,000 business loan to turn it into a reality. It’s time to build a plan, create a vision, and generally your ducks in a row.

However, if after a year or two, you graduate and you have your plan and vision in place, you’re going to want to act boldly when it comes time to taking out that loan and diving into your dream.

The key takeaway here is to be ready to take action when necessary, and then be ready to learn from your mistakes as you go along.

Create a Long-Term Vision and Build a Long-term Plan

The long-term vision of your new enterprise is a critical component that should be set in place before you launch anything. This includes both your business plan as well as things like your purposes and goals. Before you purchase a “We’re Open” sign or talk to an investor, make sure to ask yourself a few questions to bring your vision into focus:

  1. What am I trying to accomplish with this business?
  2. How can I align a profitable, sustainable business model with this goal?
  3. What do I define as true “success?”
  4. Am I creating a business in a domain that I have some experience with or knowledge about?

As you develop your vision, you can begin to work on a business plan that identifies your business goals and then fleshes out how you will reach each objective.

Remember, a real business plan is detailed and specific. Sure, you can’t predict exactly what will happen, but the goal should include properly thinking out how your business will be launched, how it will grow, and what it will take for it to succeed. Here are a few questions you can ask yourself as you build your business plan:

  1. What research do I need to conduct in order to properly understand specifically how to launch a startup in my intended industry?
  2. Have I considered sales, marketing, profit and loss projections, and other financials?
  3. Have I created a company profile that includes my products and services, resources, and target market?
  4. Have I considered what it is that will make my business unique?
  5. Have I fleshed out a business plan that I can adjust and adapt as I learn more about my industry, market, and target audience?
other valuable tips:

As you develop your vision, goals, and business plan, these will become the bedrock that you can lean on as you move forward. They aren’t set in stone, and they can certainly be adjusted as you learn and grow, but regardless of their specific content, having these in place as you begin can provide essential guidance throughout the startup process.

Becoming an Overcomer

It’s easy to feel despondent when you’re working through college and making minimum wage. Dreams and success can feel a long way off. However, if you take the time to be financially responsible, take thoughtful risks, learn from your mistakes, and build a genuine, thought-out vision and business plan, you can set yourself on an entrepreneurial trajectory that is bound for success sooner or later.

Image Credit: earning minimum wage by Pexel

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