Interest growing in small business. Is it for you?

6:28 PM, Aug 11, 2011   |    comments
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Elizabeth and Brian Donley

Tampa, Florida -- Elizabeth and Brian Donley had lucrative jobs in corporate America and Krystal Rizzo had seven years of steady employment with a production company.

All three decided to leave it all behind.

"It was definitely scary because I was used to the paycheck," said Rizzo.

Brian Donley said, "It was just that time in our lives when we felt we were going to make a change."

This year, the Donley's and Rizzo decided to start their own companies.

In Tampa, the Donely's launched Global Used Truck Sales and across the bay in Largo, Rizzo launched Unchartered Video Productions.

The Small Business Development Center at USF, which helps provides no cost consulting services for current and prospective small business owners, estimates it's seeing a 20 percent increase this year in clients wanting to learn more about launching their own small business.

Click:  Small Business Development Center Tampa Bay

But, Jim Parrish, with the SBDC warns, it's not for everybody.

"You have to objectively and reasonably look at yourself because research also shows about thirty percent of people who start businesses would fail regardless of where you put it, how much money you gave them or how great the idea was," said Parrish.

Parrish says anyone wanting to start their own business should ask three things before moving forward.

1) Do you have the self discipline?

2)Do you understand the industry you want to get into?

3) Do you have enough money?  Not just for the business, but to pay the bills at home.

If you get that far, he says planning is then key.

"Right now, the success rate for start-ups in general is 20-30 percent and it [planning] can actually move that to 60 to 70 percent," he said.

The Donley's have no regrets about leaving corporate America, but business owner ship was a goal they set a long time ago.

"Quite honestly, I wish we would have done it sooner," said Donley.

For Rizzo, it was a decision she says she was forced to make when her employer re-located and the type of job she was looking for wasn't out there.

So she re-edited her career plan, to work for herself and launched her own video production company.

"I have to work hard to be successful, but that's the great thing, the harder you work, the more successful you are," she said.

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