I just quit my job...

… to become my own boss.

I’ve worked for this site for ten years exactly on July 31st, and I’ve owned a small side business for several years too. I’ve known that my main job was about to go away for a long time, as the project’s done and there isn’t any more work for me.

I was hoping to put my skills at my business into effect for me and find a new job doing that. I was so close too; the agency for which I do a lot of side work even had a job position all written up just for me, but the Board of Supervisors balked at creating it at the last minute.

So the agency asked me to write a bid on doing the job entirely as a contractor, not a hire, thinking that the large amount on money that that would require would scare the Supervisors back into accepting a hire. They gave me eight hours to write that bid, and suggested that I make it high. So I did; I knuckled down and researched the hell out of the costs of running one’s own business, and I turned that puppy in on time.

A couple of weeks went by, and I had no idea if our proposal had worked or not until the manager called me out of the blue one day and asked, “So, is that bid still good if we cut it in half for a six-month trial period?” Took me all of about four minutes to run numbers through my head and say that yes, it was, with some minor revisions.

I signed the contract a couple of weeks ago, but still didn’t say anything to my day job, not without formal approval in hand. I’d have liked to have given them as much notice as I could, as they’re going to have to scramble a bit to come up with contingencies for my position, but I wasn’t going to shoot myself in the foot either.

Today was the deciding day. The contract was up for approval in front of the Board of Supervisors. I went and sat in on the meeting so I would know my fate as soon as possible. It was sort of anticlimatic; they ran through a group of line-items all at once, and it was accepted without any fuss.

So there I go. I came back to the office, quit my job, and in two weeks I will be the sole source of support to my family, through my own efforts. I have a few more ducks to push into line, but they’re all there and they’re all going.

I am on my own.

And it feels great (if a little sickening.)

You go, girl! You really do sound like you have it mapped out. Just gotta keep the momentum going and you’ll be golden.

Welcome to the world of the self-employed! You’ll have to invite me and Hal_Briston over for a 2pm pajama party sometime :slight_smile:

Hey, don’t forget about me and Mr. Athena! We’re proud pajama-wearing workers, too!

Beware, though - once you get used to it, you’ll never be able to go back.

Ooooh. Good for you! I’d be a quivering wreck at the idea.

No pajama-wearing for me; it’s a physical, on-site job, and I’m contracted to be there 40 hours a week. And to be available for emergencies, on-call ALL of the rest of the time.

Yeah, I’m hiring some part-time backup support for a weekend off now and then to save my sanity.

Um…where do I apply for this pajama job?

Congratulations, but don’t let this additional responsibility screw up hunting season. You gotta have priorities…

Bobo, that’s why I’m hiring *two * backups! One is a hunting partner, so I need another one for fall.

Ah! That’s the kind of planning and foresight that makes a successful boss.

Even with 6 weeks vacation, I manage to screw up hunting season about every 3 years

I’m taking my first, wobbly steps into the scary world of self-employment (I should be taking them at this very moment, as a matter of fact). Good for you, cowgirl.

featherlou, what kind of business are you going into?

I’m working on developing my landscape design business. I’ve finally got a design programme running on my computer, done the tutorials, and I’m ready to start trying to design with it. After I feel comfortable doing design work in this programme, next step is find lots of customers. :smiley:

Congratulations, Cowgirl Jules!

We should talk.

I’m this close to starting a little house-design business on the side. Just waiting for the paperwork from the Ministry. It won’t be full-time for a long time, if ever; and it’s quite possible that it won’t work at all and a year from now, I’ll quietly fold my tent and slink back to the waiting arms of the corporate world. But I’m going to give this a go.

Wow! Big move! Wishing you luck in your new career! :slight_smile:

Oooh…good luck! Sounds so scary and exciting all at once. Shame about the jimjams though.

Yup, sorry about the pajamas. Still, being your own boss is better than NOT being your own boss.

Least Original User Name Ever, it works like this: You work at a job long enough that you build up a skill set. Then you save up some money in case the whole pajama thing doesn’t work out. Next, you try to find a contract or two that look like they’ll pay your rent. Then you take a big deep breath and jump into the deep end, and hope it works out.

So far, for Mr. Athena and I, it has. The problem then becomes that the whole thing is just so sweet that you constantly look at each other and say “boy, I hope this NEVER goes away.”

Also, I’ve heard some people have problems staying motivated and actually doing work while at home in their pajamas. For me, that’s never been a problem. The fear of having to go back to an office jobs motivates me plenty. I tend to have the opposite problem - getting so engrossed in work that I find myself up at 3am just trying to finish that one last feature…

I would like to be my own boss. The problem is with being my own salesforce…

I quit my job and went freelance eight moths ago. It was a) very, very scary and b) the best thing I’ve ever done. No jim jams for me, alas :frowning:

Totally - the Dynascape programme I’m working with has CAD capability - it can import from CAD, I can do all the design work in it, and then export back to CAD. I remember you talking about the energy-efficient houses you want to design. My landscape design focus is on sustainable, low-maintenance, low-water-use yards. The way I see it, you do your homework in the design stage, and then you let good design and plant choices do the work.

ETA: Athena, how do you ignore the Straight Dope siren song? :smiley:

Interesting. I don’t know of that program. I’m investigating ArchiCAD, but that’s pricey and will take some time to learn. I will need to deal with site planning, though, so that may be good to know about.

:: nods ::

A properly-designed landscape sustains itself and doesn’t need to be mowed, trimmed, edged, weeded, etc, etc. Bill Mollison’s Permaculture introduced me to that idea. (I remember trying to convince my father that the lawn would survive perfectly well without mowing when I was a kid. He made me mow it anyways.)

And a properly-designed house supports itself, integrates with its environment, and uses as few complex mechanical systems as it can to operate. The design effort goes into the choice and arrangement of the materials; then the natural cycles of day and night and heat and cold do most of the work.

(I’ll take this to email later and end the thread hijack.)