"The question isn't who is going to let me; it's who is going to stop me." - Ayn Rand
Tonight's episode of Being Mary Jane kicked off with the perfect quote and I could not help but notice the parallel to my own mantra, which has always been, "Don't ask for permission, ask for forgiveness." I wish I knew who actually made the quote, but I'm too lazy to Google it right now.
This past weekend I launched my first e-commerce store, Port Circle, a collection dedicated to women's clothing essentials that transition from day to night for the modern day 7am to 10pm woman. I've been contemplating the idea to start an online store since June and finally made the decision in August to make the store come to fruition.
So why start a business in a saturated market? I simply felt there was a gap in the market for an affordable store dedicated to effortless contemporary style AKA shit-millennial-women-can-slap-on-without-much-effort, but still look fly. After all, there are more important things to worry about in the morning than picking out an outfit. That is how I found my niche.
So Why Entrepreneurship?
One word: Security.
Before the industrial age, entrepreneurship was the way of life and by the twentieth century it became the norm to work for someone else. Jobs were plenty and people were living the original "American Dream". That era has has come and gone as we've transitioned into what many call the "Information Age". While this era is filled with technology that provides us with endless resources of information, for the many unprepared, this era turns into a career rat race. The principal of acquiring a skill and working hard no longer applies, as roles are often replaced by robotics, computers, and automated tools. Studies show that technological breakthroughs will endanger up to 47% of total employment in the US in the next 20 years. While you consider these numbers alongisde the rise in the cost of living, and the rapid rate in which work pensions are declining, things aren't looking up as much for the traditional corporate workforce. In fact, some say that 40% of the workforce in the US will be contract employees or self-employed by 2020. Building something now will better prepare you for what is coming.
No single man, woman, or corporation should ever be able to take away your entire livelihood; yet for millions of us, our boss is our judge, jury, and executioner for 100% of our income. One person can decide your fate. So by creating your own business, or even micro-business, you take control of more shares of your life. One income stream changes everything. Most importantly, building, launching, and growing an online business will teach you skills beyond what you've learned in the past decade.
While this project is just the beginning for me, simply taking the risk already feels like an accomplishment. With that said, the next few posts will be dedicated to tools to start an online business and I hope to inspire others to join me as well.