In Minnesota, the latest self-employment business statistics are very interesting. For example, the Minnesota Secretary of State Office data shows we had 67,008 new registered businesses in 2017, or 184 per day, or nearly two new businesses every 15 minutes around the clock!

Nearly 55% of those businesses were registered as Limited Liability Companies, with an additional 22.8% registering as sole proprietors or working under a Certificate of Assumed Name. The common theme for working as a solopreneur, consultant, freelancer or independent business owner of the newly-registered 80% majority of the registrants again was flexible work schedules and the ability to maximize household income while creating a good work-life balance.

Evolve Workplace has begun to poise itself to be a small business growth center, knowing that 2/3 of all new jobs created are developed by small businesses. By providing not only affordable day desks, open coworking (also known as “hot” desks) and large reserved/dedicated desksaffordable private office suiteshourly and daily conference room rentals and meeting and event spaces for the community, there is one challenge we face unfailingly each week.

We come across men and women who have either dreamed of owning their own business who have never followed through, or who have failed at a previous business—sometimes multiple times!  A wonderful resource for women who would like to start a business is the Female Entrepreneur Association International, because they have everything from startup advice to blogs and free planning worksheets. Another “must click” is the Entrepreneur's Handbook, which lists 120 online resources, not only for would-be new business owners, but those in growth mode as well.

No matter what, somewhere in the conversation, those with an entrepreneurial spirit weave phrases into the conversation that are more teaching moments than red flags to those of us who are serial entrepreneurs.  We are experts at recognizing how fear of the unknown and lack of confidence can squash great ideas, so we try to mitigate the perceived problems for those who are in the pre-venture phase of business.

The US Small Business Administration is a great place to start if you’re thinking about doing market research and a competitive analysis about launching a business. There, you will find sample business plans, start-up cost calculators, funding/financing options, and tips about the pros and cons of buying an existing business or considering buying a franchise.

While they may have the curiosity to attend one of our monthly networking events such as East Metro Entrepreneurs, Innovators & Startups walking into a room full of strangers is an intimidating experience. For another, setting an appointment to tour the building, those who are curious to know more about the benefits of coworking should check out thisHarvard Business Review article.

And other may need a pep talk to boost their confidence that their idea can become reality, and that self-employment, particularly a microenterprise, is perfect to give them the lifestyle they dream of. Some people’s reasoning that appears logical on the surface, such as lack of startup capital, while guised as a reason, is really just insecurity cloaked in disguise.

Every day we hear excuses how difficult it is to secure financing or save to start a small business, but the reality is, with the gig economy, many businesses can be started simply with a cell phone and a laptop.   At Evolve, even the need to buy things like a coffee maker, a printer, basic office supplies, and furnishings are erased from the equation, because our coworking space is truly all-inclusive.

David Lundy