Chances are you could come up with a dozen reasons why you should make the jump and start and grow a photography business. There are a ton of benefits to it:

  • You can choose your own hours
  • You can choose which clients to work with
  • You can what field to specialize in
  • You can set your own prices and control how much you make

While it’s easy to come up with a list of why you should start your own photography business, is there a list on why you shouldn’t? Can you look at it from another perspective, and decide if you are approaching your business ideas the wrong way?

Let’s take a look at some of the worst reasons to go into business for yourself.

Reason 1. Get More Work Done Around The House

I’ve worked from home for years and love the benefits. But the biggest trap to fall into is assuming you can do a load of laundry, clean up a room, or do a few chores in between working.

Work time is work time. It doesn’t matter if you are sitting in an office complex or in a spare bedroom. You’ll get easily distracted, and end up getting very little done if you don’t put all your focus into your business during work hours. The laundry can wait until “after hours”.

Reason 2. Spend More Time With The Kids/Family

Unless you are planning to work part-time on your business, you’ll have to decide where your priorities lie. If a phone call comes in and the baby is crying, where would your focus turn? It takes motivation and attention to build a business. In order to get any work done, you can’t rely on a 30-minute television show as a distraction. All you’ll find yourself with is frustration.

Reason 3. Get Rich Quick

We all have visions of finding the perfect client that is a constant buyer. Or having a service that people rave over, and refer to to everyone in town. Yet those success stories are few and far in between. While you can make a healthy living from it, it’s going to take time, effort and energy along the way.

Reason 4. You Love Photography

Being in love with photography is a great start. But you also have to love business, production, sales, and marketing. It takes so much more to run a business – not just the love of photography. You have to have a strong desire to learn a little bit about everything.

Reason 5. You Can Charge Whatever You Want

In theory, you can set your prices however you choose. But you have to be sure you have a market for your pricing, and your pricing is enough to help you earn a healthy living. There’s a fine line between the two.

Reason 6. You’ll Have Less Expenses

Working at home sounds like a dream. You won’t be spending money on gas to get to work, clothes for the office, or lunches out with co-workers. Yet running a business even out of your home will give you a variety of other expenses. Camera equipment is just the beginning. You’ll have marketing and advertising expense, networking expense, and educational training to make you better at what you do.

Reason 7. Running A Business From Home Is Easy

It sounds great, and many people dream of the opportunity. But working from home takes discipline. You have to draw a distinct line between personal or family time and work time. You can’t put something off until later just because you have access to your office 24 hours a day. Building your own business definitely has its rewards, but you have to be ready for hard work too.

Reason 8. Work Will Just Come To You

“I have a website, where are the people?” “I sent out a postcard, why isn’t my phone ringing?” Along the way you are going to ask questions like this every day. The cold fact is marketing is a shot in the dark at best. Some things will work; some won’t. You have to consistently work at it in order to bring in customers. Even when your studio is filled with customers and you can’t imagine one more in your day, you STILL have to market for the weeks and months ahead. Work will never just come to you – you will always have to work at keeping it coming.

Reason 9. No Boss!

Ahh, the best reason of all. No one above you to give you bad reviews, or to break the news that you’ll be receiving a pay cut. Or worse, a pink slip. The idea of working for ourselves is amazingly attractive. You can do what you want, when you want to. But if you don’t stay motivated and keep yourself productive, you’ll never make it as a business owner.

Reason 10. You’ll Have More Free Time

The idea sounds great. You can take off an hour early to catch your child’s soccer game. You can choose to head out to lunch with a friend. But instead of sharing a job with other people, knowing someone else on staff will get stuff done if you call in sick, you are on your own. If something is due out to a client in the morning, you have to stay and get the job done – even if it takes until midnight or beyond. It’s all on your shoulders, and you must work to get everything completed in a timely manner. Procrastination can literally kill your business.

Reason 11. You’ll Have More Security

In today’s world of job redundancies, heading out on your own can be very appealing. In fact, I wouldn’t trade it for anything. Yet it still can produce daily stress. Will someone ask for a refund? Will today’s clients call up and cancel? The questions are always there. In order to build up security, you’ll have to rely on your own determination and put a little money on the side in case of emergencies down the road.

Reason 12. Your Family Will Be Proud

I come from a family of workers. No entrepreneurial spirit in my background! So I know first hand that you’ll never get support and backing from your family in the early years. They don’t understand what you are doing, and have no idea of the possibilities. Instead they see you as being more free and able to connect with them on their schedule. If they have a day off, why can’t you spend the day with them? It may be quite a while before they understand what you do. Don’t look for support until they fully understand every aspect.

Summing Up

In the end, you have to take into consideration both the advantages and disadvantages before starting your business. Even if you are confident in your own abilities and think you are on the right track, having a backup plan to help you reorient yourself in the case of an unfortunate event is always a wise step. Tailor your business according to the advantages and disadvantages you think might apply to you and have your all your sides covered. If you remember to protect yourself in any type of situation, there is no reason for you not to succeed.

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