Tuesday, 17 November 2009


Well if you did of course?  This question came to me from Indy News an American site for Independent Cosmetic Businesses that I subscribe to and I thought it was well worth sharing.

Most Indie Business owners don't start a business with the idea that they'll, well, start a business!

Mostly, we find something we love to do and we starting doing it with a passion. Soon, we find that we can't stop ourselves. Whether it's making soap, jewelry or baby blankets, our new hobby absorbs us fully.

Then, we give the products we make away as gifts. It's easy enough since by the time we start unloading everything, our houses are overrun with supplies and something has to give.

Then, the people we give stuff to come back and ask to buy some. After a few months, it dawns on us that we just might have a budding business!

So we coast along for a while in what I call "No Man's Business Land." We are a cross between a hobbyist and a business owner.

We are a hobusiness owner, and we know we've come to a fork in the road.

What to do?

Take it to the next level and start a real business where we have to be profitable, market ourselves, embrace state and federal regulations and more?

Or stay at the hobbyist level where we make things for fun, don't have to worry about insurance or following federal and state regulations and just have a good time?

Id love to hear what you think..........

Question: If you are a business owner, how did you make the move from "hobusiness owner" to real, full-fledged business owner? Are you in the process of deciding? What are you considering?

1 comment:

    I'm right in the middle of doing this! changing my soap making hobby into a business but that was always my intention once I realised I was totally addicted to making soap. I'm trying to keep myself grounded and at the point I was when I realised I simply love making soap, My aim is to try doing this by going very, very slowly. Currently I'm doing lots of farmers Markets, here in the South West of England (very rural, there are lots) and this way I'm getting fantastic feedback. It took me a year of making soaps and testing them on family and friends before I felt comfortable being able to reproduce a recipe again and again (that's a skill in itself I have discovered!) then got the soaps certified and started selling. I was very scared but as soon as I started I realised I was onto something, people really seemed to like them and were coming back for more, which was lovely. Then I did masses of research to find the e-commerce software I really wanted to work with, which in actual fact is American, and got on with creating my website
    I'm very happy with the site and the orders are starting to - very slowly - trickle in. Its a whole job in itself to get the site recognised by search engines and I have had to create a blog and facebook page too, it all takes so much time! As i'm new to the business I am still working as an Arts Development Officer (my job for the past 20 years) for 3 days a week, and am a mum so trying to sell, make and market the soaps is hard. I can really see why people burn out, I just hope I can keep grounded and stay happy in my soap making. Id love to hear other peoples experiences of this very real dilemma.