The number of times I have heard someone say “I am a Sole Trader but I am not in business” is unbelievable! Trade Unions are even saying it now too! They claim that all these people are Self-Employed but are not Entrepreneurs – why not? So what makes someone an Entrepreneur, what characterises someone as being in business?
An Entrepreneur is someone who sees an opportunity to make money and seizes it; the kid on the bus who sees hungry children on their way home from school. He buys packets of biscuits at the local shop and sells them one by one to the children on the bus – He is an Entrepreneur! You do not have to be an inventor or go on Dragons’ Den to be an Entrepreneur.
Entrepreneurs take a risk and can lose; What if none of the children like the biscuits bought? That is when a successful Entrepreneur conducts market research beforehand, monitors what sold well last time, sees how many biscuits it takes before their friends are not hungry anymore, gets a mate to sell on another bus route, etc. Anything and everything to help grow the business.
If you work as a Sole Trader you have taken a risk. You have no job security and you have new responsibilities:
- To keep accurate records & report takings to the tax man.
- To find your own work.
- To keep up to date in your field.
- To do a good job/make a good product.
If you do not acknowledge this, then your business will fail and you will not be a Sole Trader any more but simply out of work!
Like any Entrepreneur you have the opportunity to exploit opportunities; unlike the ordinary employee who can not.
There are choices to be made by even the smallest Entrepreneur:-
- Systems – pay for a new efficient system or struggle with an older, cheaper, slower one.
- Staff – employ a substitute you can train up or may already have the training, or do it yourself.
- Advise – do your own research or get a specialist in.
- Pricing – Charge more but get fewer sales or charge less and get more sales.
- Customers – say no to difficult customers as they are time wasters or just charge them extra or do the job just for the goodwill (if any).
- Upgrade – when or if to upgrade the product/service.
- Market place – where to find the next customer
- Expansion – when/if/how to offer extra services/products.
As a Sole Trader or a director of your own company you are in business, you are an Entrepreneur, you have these and lots of other opportunities to develop your business and make more money so make sure you use them!
We can offer advice and assistance with accounts packages, with reporting to and dealing with HMRC, etc. so do contact us for help and let us provide the accounting advice leaving you free to develop your business.