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The Champion Forum Podcast

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Thank you for listening to The Champion Forum Podcast! Do you have a side hustle? Would you love to start one, but you aren’t sure how to balance being an entrepreneur with a full-time career? In this week’s episode, I talk to Todd Connor, author of the book Third Shift Entrepreneur, about how you can make time to pursue your dream job and create your own journey to success.

Why did you decide to write Third Shift Entrepreneur?

People who want to have their own business don’t have anyone to look to who looks like them. Most people can’t drop out of school or just quit their job, even if they have ambition and talent. The book aims to show people how regular people with bills, jobs, and kids can become successful entrepreneurs.

Re-defining quitting and starting

Taking the leap to start your own business is not quitting; it is starting. Entrepreneurs risk their time and reputation. You have really started your own business when you feel reputationally bound to it.

How do you prepare to start a business?

People want to create a grand plan for their business without looking at what the market wants. When people start a business, they tend to jump to buying things. Spending money does not make you a business owner! Wait for the market to tell you what you need instead of creating and investing in a product that people do not need or want.

You have to build a version of your product and see how the world responds. Don’t worry about making it perfect. Show up, see what people want, and respond to what you see in the data. You can’t fail if you launch a business people want.

When should you make the switch?

It’s time to quit your former job or form an exit strategy when you can no longer keep up with the demands of both and you are missing out on opportunities with your new business. Let the market prove that there is a demand for your product. You could set a revenue goal. Your goal does not have to be more or less than your current salary; it can be whatever you want. It could be your first major donor or your first customer that is going to pay for your first six months.

Defining real success

If your starting point is that you are committed to solving this problem, then your pursuit is honorable. Trying to talk yourself into being successful is not helpful. Your brain is wired to see two outcomes: success or failure. But there are hundreds of outcomes. Even if you don’t achieve the outcome you were aiming for, you can create new opportunities by just putting yourself out there and trying something new.

Q: What do you think of when you think of an entrepreneur? What are some of their notable qualities? Why do you think those qualities helped them succeed?

Q: Have you ever wanted to be an entrepreneur? What kept you from starting your own business (or starting sooner)? Describe a time when perfectionism kept you from taking a risk. What would you do differently if you could go back in time?

Q: If you could solve any problem, what would it be? Describe your solution for the problem. What would it feel like to work to solve that problem every day? How can you start solving that problem today, whether at your current job or as an entrepreneur?

Application Activities:

  1. Do you have a side hustle? If you have one or have always wanted to start one, have you told people about your side hustle? Take one step today toward making it public! You could post about your offer on social media or talk about it with a group of friends. Remember that putting your reputation on the line is part of starting your journey as an entrepreneur!

  2. What big decisions are you about to make? Try applying Todd’s advice that success and failure are not the only options. Write down ten possible outcomes for your decision and see how you feel about each possibility.

  3. Todd wrote his book because he wanted to help regular people see a path to success. He wanted to provide a role model to people who might not have one in their everyday lives. Who could you be a role model to? What skills do you have? What challenges have you overcome? Consider these questions and consider passing along your knowledge and experience to help mentor someone who wants to be where you are today. Additionally, consider posting tips and advice on your social media. You never know what opportunity could come from it!

Connect with Todd Conner

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