Finding a Job After Running Your Own Business

Being self-employed can be a dream come true for some, but others find it to be stressful and even overwhelming. There is peace of mind that comes from having steady work and a regular paycheck from a salaried position, and these are just a few of the reasons why some people who have been self-employed make the decision to find a job after running their own business. 

If you are thinking about making this transition in the near future, consider following these tips to more easily find a wonderful position that is well-suited for you.

Define the Desired Job Position

After running your own business, you may feel confident applying for a managerial position or even heading up a department, and hiring managers may believe that you have the knowledge and experience to do so. 

On the other hand, some who have been self-employed may prefer to take the low-stress route, and they may simply be happy to have a manager head up the department while they perform their basic functions and fulfill itemized responsibilities each day. Before applying for a new position, it is important to define what you want out of your new job. 

Each person is unique, and each position that you may apply for is also unique. Defining your goals and desires up-front will help you to more easily make a decision that will help you to feel fulfilled and satisfied with your career going forward.

Update Your Resume

Applying for a position after running a business can be intimidating, but the good news is that most people who have had the opportunity to start and run a business have some great skills that hiring managers may be drawn to. 

For example, you turned an idea into a successful venture from the ground up, and this is an incredible statement about project management skills. You may have managerial, accounting and technical skills as well. Many self-employed individuals wear a number of different hats and refine numerous skills while running their own business. 

Take time to update your resume before applying for a position, and add all of your new experiences and skills to your resume.

Gather References

A common challenge that many will face when transitioning from being self-employed to working for another person relates to getting references. A hiring manager typically will review a candidate’s previous work history by contacting former managers. 

When you have been self-employed, this is not an option. Therefore, you should be prepared to provide the hiring manager with references. 

In some cases, you may list the references at the bottom of your resume for the manager to contact at their leisure. In other cases, you may consider requesting that a few of your closest business colleagues prepare letters of recommendation for you. You can include one or two of these letters behind your resume when you submit it for consideration for a position.

Network With Colleagues

Many who are self-employed have established a great network of professional colleagues and clients, and this is particularly true if you have been self-employed for several years or longer. Consider networking with some of your colleagues to learn about their plans for growth and expansion. 

You may also pay attention to news related to positions that will be opening up soon and more. You may mention to your colleagues as well that you are preparing to close your business. Some savvy business owners may decide to take advantage of the opportunity to hire a talented, skilled professional who they already know and respect. 

They may have been sitting on plans to expand or grow their business in some way, and they may have been waiting for the right individual or opportunity to come along.

Prepare For the Interview

When you apply for a new job, it is important that you think through some of the questions that you may be asked. Some people view being self-employed as one of the pinnacles of a career, and they may see your transition back into the workplace as a salaried individual to be a sign that you failed as a business owner. 

In reality, there are many reasons why people make this transition that have nothing to do with success. There may be some curiosity about the reason for your career move, so you should be prepared to answer it. Think through the reason that you want to provide to others, and create a thoughtful, tactful way to respond to questions about this.

While being self-employed is ideal for some, it may not be desirable for everyone. If you are preparing to step out of the role of being your own boss and are thinking about applying for a job soon, consider how each of these steps can help you to more easily locate and secure a great position.