Angela Lee adopts a pragmatic attitude when it comes to starting a business- she keeps her “day job”. Angela started three companies while keeping her full-time job, a feat that relies as much on setting boundaries as it does on time management. Are you taking complete advantage of your full-time salary? Will keeping two jobs provide the right lifestyle for you? It’s a big risk to leave a stable job for uncharted entrepreneurship territory. Angela will give tips on how you can run a side business while working full time.
Starting from job transitioning to marketing to overcoming obstacles, every video chat in our “Seven Sees for Aspiring Entrepreneurs” series comes within the purview of entrepreneur-investor relationships. Angela’s latest company, 37 Angels, understands the seminal role angel investors play in this financial marriage and she is now bringing more women to the investment table. Women have substantial buying power/force in the global economy, but not in start-up investments.
Angela, a former marketing consultant to Fortune 500 companies and a teacher of Marketing and Strategic Problem Solving at NYU and UC Berkeley, is selecting female leaders to be trained in the art of early stage start-up investing. Pumping up the prep with payout, she is also investing $50K in seed capital to a chosen start-up.
Now for more good news: 37 Angels is offering THREE special discounts for the GGF community. If you are an aspiring angel investor and apply to be part of their inaugural bootcamp, you’ll be guaranteed an interview with the founder. If you are an established angel investor, you’ll receive a 20% discount off the annual membership fee (a $200 value) to join their angel investing network. We’ll reveal the third discount during the live chat. Hint: We saved the best for last.
When: Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Time: 8- 8:30 pm EST
Party Hosts: @GoGirlFinance and @37angelsny
If you missed the 37 Angels video chat tonight, Angela’s recap is below:
At your existing job:
- Follow the rules. Make sure you’re not breaking any rules by working on side projects while you have a full-time job. Be cautious about using company resources.
- Time it carefully. Start a new venture when you’re relatively comfortable and stable with your current role. Don’t try to start a new venture when you’ve just been promoted or when you’ve just started a new full-time job.
- Don’t dial it in. You don’t know when/if your venture is going to prosper. You may even conclude that the life of an entrepreneur isn’t for you. You shouldn’t burn bridges. Keep performing well at your current job.
At your new venture:
- Test, iterate, then test some more. Test your product/service in the market with as many people as possible (potential customers, investors, and other entrepreneurs). Continue to develop your idea as you test it. Start with a conversation, then build to a powerpoint deck, and then to a prototype. You’ll be surprised by how refined your idea will get by just putting it onto paper.
- Think about the larger ecosystem. Too many entrepreneurs think about their product/service in a vacuum or only think about direct competitors. Rather, approach your product development with a larger lens. What can you learn from the success or failures in industries that are similar to yours?
- Find your team. Figure out your strengths and the skills you lack. Are you an amazing marketer but lack technical experience? Are you a technical wizard but aren’t great at business development? Go to meetups, work your network, and build an amazing founding team.
- Get your finances in order. Have enough runway to go a year without a salary or an investor backing you. Also, some things require an income to get qualified, such as a lease on an apartment or refinancing on a mortgage. Get those things out of the way while you have a steady paycheck .
- Check your health. Get all of your medical appointments out of the way – get a physical, go see your dentist, get your eyes checked. Think about insurance. Make sure you’re covered under your significant other’s plan or sign up for COBRA (which lasts for 18 months). You don’t want to be forced to go back to your former job because you need the health insurance.
- Set expectations. Talk to those close to you and prepare them for what you’re about to start – long hours, no pay, lots of emotional ups and downs.
- Create boundaries. Hopefully, you’re working on something that you love. This is great, but it also means that the hours can get very long. Make sure you define what your non-negotiables are. Figure out what will keep you sane in the long run and stick to that.