Every new small business idea must face this simple yet essential question: Is your small business idea a business, a hobby, or both?
Go ahead, take 30 seconds to ask yourself this question.
If you answered “both”, you have failed this test. Chuck your idea and go back to the brainstorming phase. You will only lose time and money if you don’t stop now.
If you answered “hobby”, congrats! You now have a new hobby. Consult your day-planner and your family to see if have time for a new hobby.
If you answered “business”, congrats! You now have a new business idea.
A business may be defined as, “something you do to make money.” Businesses are not about making friends, pursuing personal dreams, doing something interesting, developing personal skills, or having a good time. A business exists to make money, as quicky and efficiently as possible. That’s it. End of story.
A hobby may be defined as, “something you do for personal reasons: enjoyment, socialization, or something else.” Hobbies are not about making money, building economic leverage, developing business relationships, or being efficient. A hobby exists for purely personal reasons, as pleasurably, enricheningly, interestingly as possible. That’s it. End of story.
A business/hobby may be defined as, “something you tell yourself you do to make money while also enjoying yourself.” These mixtures are typically bad at making money (because you get lost in the fun parts of it), bad at personal enjoyment (because you get lost in the economic parts of it), and great at wasting as much time & money as you’re willing to throw at them. That’s it. End of story.
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