At this time of year that is a question that runs through my mind a lot, why go professional.
January is a strange month for me, it follows the busiest period for my business, 4 months work in 6 weeks, it’s the anniversary of me going pro, it’s the time of the year you plan forward and review what has been, it’s tax return time and it is normally the quietest month work wise. All in all a time to reflect on life and the choices you have made.
This January finds me tired, stressed, thinking too much and with time on my hands, not the best combination. So back to the big question, why go pro. The case for not going pro is stronger so lets start with that.
Between where I sit and the centre of Leek, about 2 miles, Google thinks there are at least 20 photographers and looking at their web site they all look professional, but most are not, most are part time at best, so what are the advantages that keep so many back from making it a full time career.
- Security, most have a full time job that pays a regular wage.
- Competition, at the level they are working at the battle for paying jobs is fierce, it’s safer not having to rely on the income
- Paper work, when it’s formally a business there is just so much admin, best to keep it on the quite.
- Tax, really there’s no need to bother Mr Tax man, it’s only a hobby and he’s so busy.
- Insurance, it’s not really needed as it’s not really a business!
So why go pro, admittedly after spending a week working on my tax figures and being constantly reminded about my costs as I print out receipt after receipt, not going pro seems like a good idea, but for the rest of the year it’s great.
- You are the boss, I’m nearly the worst boss I’ve worked for, I always seem to know when I’m slacking off.
- You are in control, if it all goes wrong it’s down to just you.
- Its very rewarding, and sometimes you get paid as well!
When ever you go self employed you are gambling all you have on just your skill and ability, be it running a shop or being a builder, the deciding factor is belief in your self. The reward is knowing you have made it, if you have, 20% of businesses fail within the first year, 50% within 3.
The reason I’m happy I went pro can be summed up in one picture taken on Blue Monday last year, taking this on what is supposed to be the worst day of the year really brings home how right I was to go pro.