Corporate America has changed; job security and benefits are rapidly evaporating. That’s one reason that becoming an entrepreneur and business owner is the new career plan for millions of skilled, talented professionals who are leaving the 9-to-5 world behind. If you are one of those aspiring to business ownership, ensure your success by obtaining a solid business education and up-to-date skills. Enrolling in an MBA program with a specialization in Marketing is a great way to begin.
A business owner or entrepreneur’s job duties can run the gamut from hiring staff to arranging financing. Specific activities will vary according to the business’s category, size and industry. In general, business owners are responsible for the growth, stability, direction and everyday operation of the business.
For entrepreneurs, writing plans is a key activity – especially before the business is open. From a business plan to marketing and sales plans, the old adage is true: if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Even after the business is up and running, the planning continues. Some business owners create sales plans each month, marketing plans each quarter and overall business plans each year.
Additional job duties for a typical business owner include meeting with service vendors or product suppliers to facilitate delivery. They may go on buying trips to purchase inventory. Depending on the size of the business, the owner may create sales displays and even stock the shelves.
Financials are the lifeblood of a business, so entrepreneurs must be familiar with profit and loss statements and other financial reports. Setting a budget and then comparing actual income and expenditures is an important aspect of the business owner’s duties. Others include reviewing sales reports and adjusting sales activities or expenses to better meet budgets.
Entrepreneurs must be prepared for hiring and managing staff, including the myriad federal, state and local laws that come into play once the first employee is hired. Some business owners personally manage all the accounting activities, while others hire CPAs.
Smart marketing helps a business stand out in a crowded field. Creating advertising campaigns, social media campaigns and face-to-face events are typical activities business owners undertake to deliver their message to the right audience. Marketing activities may also include networking, direct selling and entertaining clients.
An entrepreneur’s work environment depends on the age of the business, the industry, and product or service, and may include retail storefronts, commercial office space or a home office. The number of hours a business owner works usually depends on the workload. While they can enjoy flexible schedules and some freedom, they may also need to work longer hours.
Business owner and entrepreneur salaries vary widely depending on factors such as size, industry and geographical location. National salary data on PayScale.com, as of December 2010, showed that business owners earned a median total income of about $68,631 per year, with those in the 25th to 75th percentile earning between $38,714 and $98,548 in total pay.
A sampling of PayScale.com data from December 2010 showed the following salary ranges for industries popular with entrepreneurs:
|Child Care/Day Care||$23,532 - $62,493|
|Landscaping||$30,330 - $75,928|
|Cleaning Services||$25,187 - $76,220|
|General Contractor||$35,198 - $93,759|
|Construction||$39,957 - $111,154|
Company size also has an effect on business owner salaries. A sampling on PayScale.com in December 2010 revealed the following salary ranges:
|1 – 9:||$35,630 to $78,325|
|10 – 49:||$44,856 to $99,815|
|50 – 199:||$68,790 to $253,695|
The data shows that the top salaries generally go to those with the experience and advanced business skills needed to grow a business into a viable, sustainable operation.
An individual can become an entrepreneur or business owner with nearly any educational background. It is possible to be a successful business owner without advanced education or training, but it is clear that a business is more likely to succeed with it is backed by owners with solid skills and an educational background that gives them the tools they need to survive in a competitive marketplace.
The skills and knowledge a business owner needs can be obtained by enrolling in an MBA program with a specialization in Marketing. Coursework typically includes marketing management, strategic marketing, international business, operations management, and consumer behavior strategies.
Business owners who have earned an MBA with a specialization in Marketing are able to:
Being a business owner can be a great career move, if you have are independent, self-motivated and possess excellent sales and interpersonal skills. You’ll also need a strong work ethic and the ability to adapt to a variety of situations. You can be a successful entrepreneur with hard work and the skills you can learn in an MBA program with a specialization in Marketing. If you’re thinking of leaving corporate America for your own business, start by pursuing your MBA.