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Quiz: Should I Start My Own Business?

You're good at what you do, but frustrations with bureaucracy, poor business decisions or hard-to-work-with coworkers can make you second guess your career choice and — even more so — your current job. You might be wondering, "Should I start my own business?" Since striking out on your own is a huge commitment, take our quiz to see whether it could be the right path for you before you make a big decision.

Difficult Questions and Honest Answers

Read each question below and select the answer that best describes you.

 

1. How much cash do you have readily available, not including lines of credit or retirement accounts?

a. Enough to cover a year's worth of personal expenses.

b. Enough to buy a large coffee at Starbucks, but only if I look under the sofa cushions.

c. Enough to cover three months' worth of personal expenses.

d. Enough to make it to the next paycheck.

 

2. When you tell your spouse or another trusted friend or family member that you’re thinking about starting your own business, what’s their response?

a. Laughter

b. Interest

c. Fear

d. Confusion

 

3. If you launched your own business today, how many possible customers are in your professional or social network?

a. 20 or fewer

b. 21 to 45

c. 46 to 75

d. 76 or more

 

4. Which of the following best describes your personal financial situation?

a. You have little debt and significant personal savings.

b. You have little debt, but you also have hardly any personal savings.

c. You're struggling to make ends meet every month.

d. You have a lot of debt, but you don't have a problem paying bills every month.

 

5. Which of the following best describes your business idea?

a. You aren't sure what you want to do — you only know that you want to work for

yourself.

b. You know what you want to do, but you haven't thought about how to turn your

passion into a full-time business.

c. You've written a full-length, professional business plan after conducting marketing

research.

d. You've talked with a few people in the industry about your idea and have some

understanding of the resources you might need.

 

6. How many hours per week are you willing to devote to your business in the beginning?

a. Less than 40 hours

b. 40 to 60 hours

c. More than 60 hours

d. Whatever’s necessary

 

Score Your Quiz

For each question, find the number of points that corresponds with your answer. Add them up to see whether or when you should start your own business.

1. a = 4, b = 1, c = 3, d = 2

2. a = 2, b = 4, c = 1, d = 3

3. a = 1, b = 2, c = 3, d = 4

4. a = 4, b = 3, c = 1, d = 2

5. a = 1, b = 2, c = 4, d = 3

6. a = 1, b = 2, c = 3, d = 4

Launch Control to Business Professional (20 to 24 points)

All systems are a go. You've got your personal finances in order, and you're ready to face the likelihood that your business isn’t going to turn an immediate profit. You're organized, understand the upcoming workload, and have the support of your family and friends. It's time to stop asking yourself, "Should I start my own business?" and push the start button.

Browse our essential startup resources to begin your journey.

Whoa, Nellie! (15 to 19 points)

You may want to wait for a few months or a year. You might have a good idea of what you want to do, but it's important to hash out the details and prepare yourself financially.

For a next step, educate yourself about starting your own business. These important legal tips are a good start.

Now Might Not Be the Right Time (0 to 14 points)

A low score doesn’t mean you’ll never run your own business, but it does mean that some introspection is in order. First, consider why you are thinking about starting your own company and what you need to do to get the finances and time needed to do so.

Get inspired by reading “Why Start Your Own Business?

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