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Should I Start a Tutoring Business This Year? Part I

It is late December and my mind is filled with such trivial thoughts as ‘When should I take down the Christmas Tree?’ and ‘Where should we go for New Years Eve?’ and ‘Should I start my new diet now or make a fresh start in January?’ I force my mind back to a more productive track and try to come up with a good subject for my last blog post of the year. January 1st will mark the beginning of our tenth year since we started The Wealthy Tutor, which has since helped hundreds of people start their own tutoring business the right way, without becoming indentured servants to the big tutoring franchises.

Having dispensed with my shameless self marketing, I will now proceed with the main theme of this post – ‘Should I Start a Tutoring Business This Year?’ I thought this would be a timely subject for many of my readers, as this is traditionally a time of year when people are thinking about new beginnings, fresh starts and perhaps even new careers.

I have started numerous businesses myself and helped hundreds of others to do the same. I am pretty good at spotting an opportunity, analyzing the potential, writing the business plan, and then launching the business in a timely manner. I understand the process and what is required to get it done. Many people, unfortunately, do not see it quite this clearly.

I remember a phone call I once received from a potential customer – someone who had come across my website and wanted to see if there was an actual live person at the other end. The first words out of his mouth were something like ‘I have been looking at your website on and off for a couple of years now, and have a few questions about your system.’ This came as quite a surprise to me. The fact that this guy had been thinking about starting a tutoring business and had been checking out our website on a weekly basis for two years while trying to make up his mind! This struck me as one of the most chronic cases of decision paralysis I have ever heard of. I can understand someone taking a few weeks or even several months to consider an opportunity like this, but two years is a little excessive.

For those of you out there who are considering starting a tutoring business or indeed any type of business, I offer you the following words of wise common sense, if not outright wisdom:

Lesson 1:  Imagine Yourself as an Entrepreneur. Before you even consider launching your own company, ask yourself if you are the right kind of person to go it alone. If you are excited by the prospect of running your own show and succeeding (or failing) according to your own smarts, hard work, and a bit of luck then maybe this is for you. If you need the stability of a regular pay check and can’t sleep at night with even the smallest level of risk, then this is probably not for you.

Lesson 2:  Don’t Quit Your Day Job:  As the song says ‘Freedom’s Just Another Word for Nothing Left to Lose’. So if you are currently unemployed, the decision to start a business is pretty simple, as you don’t have much to lose, and everything to gain. However if you are a teacher with a full or even part-time job, don’t give it up until your business is up and running and you are pretty sure it can sustain you. I have given this advice to many teachers who are tired of the daily grind and worsening conditions, and looking for a quick way out. Some have even listened to me.

Lesson 3:  Set Up Your Targets:  If you have decided you are serious about starting a tutoring company and that this is the right opportunity for you, set up a realistic timeline for researching, analyzing and finalizing your decision. For instance you could easily complete your research within 4 weeks, write a business plan over the next eight weeks, and then take two weeks to make your final decision. This whole process should take no more than 3-4 months from start to finish, and allows enough time to address all the relevant considerations.

Stay Tuned for Part II

For more information about starting a tutoring business consult:

The Wealthy Tutor

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