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When I left the corporate world in 2010 I was probably ill prepared to dash into the uncertain world of self-employment – indeed I often wonder if I would have made the same decision had I been blessed with the benefit of hindsight! As someone much wiser than me once said you know where you are when you are in employment paid, skint, paid, skint etc. whereas in self-employment its very much the case of skint, skint, skint, paid, – until you establish yourself at least! It’s also a case in the outset of swapping one demanding boss for many as your clients become ever more demanding of your time!

Mark Northall 1 smallOk so I’m painting a great picture of self-employment aren’t I? Well according to the Office for National Statistics there are nearly four and a half million of us registered as self-employed in the UK so I suspect my observations above aren’t unique to me. I work long hours sure but I also don’t lose sight of what I’m doing it for and if I need to take a couple of hours to drop the kids somewhere take in a sporting event or even have a coffee with the wife (yes she’s retired and around the place) then I just do.

A few advantages and disadvantages then but what’s interesting is the almost as a consequence of being self-employed my social circle has grown exponentially, mainly due to the people I have met whilst networking (predominantly 4Networking – you have to try it – Advert over). The connections made have gone much deeper than the initial business card swap and tens maybe even hundreds of people I would now call friends has been the unexpected bonus of being my own boss. This was something I never expected when I began down this path – so I dedicate this blog to all my new(ish) Friends out there and say to them if you feel like giving up – think of the bonus of being in the position you are in. Life is not about the destination it’s about the ride – enjoy it because this isn’t a dress rehearsal – Self Employment Rocks!