A Lazy Entreprener - the Full/Part Time Dilemma


Question: Can a lazy entrepreneur/perfectionist make it?

I am 50, single, and after 15 years have built a very nice sole prop web design business. I became more disciplined last year and might finally clear 100k this year.

But I have another business idea. Even tested it a bit.

Should I go for it full-time ?... would take me a two months solid ... or do it on weekends for six months?

Is there a best practice for the ambitious but lazy entrepreneur?

Work Life Time Management Fulltime

asked Aug 11 '11 at 10:30
249 points

6 Answers


It looks like you have full flexibility with your schedule, since you own your business.

My recommendation in that case is to work on your idea part-time, keeping your day activity to the minimum you need to survive.

It's that simple. Each month, re-evaluate your decision.

answered Aug 11 '11 at 10:33
Alain Raynaud
10,927 points
  • Good answer. Particularly the monthly re-evaluation. And, RandNotAyn is ONLY 50. The 50's can be the most productive decade in the life of a person under 60. – Jack Rodenhi 13 years ago


You've established a successful business - excellent start!

And you've now become more systematic and effective in what you do. You've built order out of chaos, and it's paying off. That's even better! And now there's this new idea...

Well, the good news is that you're in a great position to become the lazy entrepreneur you aspire to be.

Job #1 is to work out how to keep the business at its current top line performance, with you working three days a week not five. That's partly just reaping the benefits of the discipline you've already established (and foregoing, or at least delaying, the opportunity to push out further). And it's partly looking down your activities and asking, which of the things that eat my time could I pay someone else to do for me?

Now you have two days in hand for the new project. Hold that thought.

I'm guessing that your web design business is very relational, so you probably don't want to be totally out of touch with it any working day. But work out your minimum daily time commitment on your new 'days off' - two half hour slots, morning and afternoon to check email and return calls? Decide what's workable, and stick to it.

Next, I'm going to suggest something that sounds odd! Devote half a day a week to something else entirely - something new, interesting, and not a business opportunity. This is a gift to the lazy entrepreneur you aspire to be. And now, as Chairman of New Idea Corp, hire yourself for 1.5 days a week to pursue the new venture. The target? To create (while keeping to that strict time budget) something more lucrative than the web design business.

Maybe this first venture will fly. If success comes, everything else will sort itself out. But it may flop (most ventures do). And in this case, you've only spent what you could easily afford, you can learn from the experience and sniff out another idea to pursue. Once, twice, three times through this process, and who knows where you could be?

answered Aug 12 '11 at 16:38
Jeremy Parsons
5,197 points


Can a lazy entrepreneur/perfectionist make it?

Sure.. If the idea doesn't require a lot of work to launch it.

But without knowing what the basic idea is, it's hard to say whether or not a P/T work load would be sufficient..?

answered Aug 12 '11 at 10:31
Justin Hammack
151 points


LOVE your name;)

Need a little more information -

Your current income comes from the web dev business - can you take a pay cut and outsource your work or grab a part time partner?
Do you have an exit plan for your web dev business anyway? Thought about selling it?
Have you performed enough market research to test the market before trying the new business before putting in 2 months?

answered Aug 11 '11 at 12:21
Allison Reynolds
394 points
  • No, can't outsource. It's too personal and custom. Exit plan for the web dev business is stop taking new clients, send everyone a CD and tell them to get some help as I'll be moving on in six months. I don't think I could sell it (for much...it would just be a portfolio). The new business I could sell. Market research I've done is very empirical ... there are thousands of these businesses in my area, they are big on search engine advertising, and as a result it's very expensive scaring off perhaps 95% of the market. I'd like to give them an avenue for SEM under $100 a month. – Randy 13 years ago
  • So you dont ahve a web design business, you are a freelance web designer. That makes a difference. A hugh one. – Net Tecture 13 years ago
  • I don't know what you mean re:definition of freelance or the respective role in the decision. I don't work for other web firms and I occasionally hire freelancers. – Randy 13 years ago


I think that you should first decide as to which you really want to pursue. It should have been a good idea if you are already willing to jump to it even just for a short time of testing. I think that you should not give up on your business as that will be your primary source as you build on your newer plan.

Balance your schedule and get someone who can step in, in your behalf while you are focusing on the other type of work.

answered Aug 11 '11 at 12:44
Ryan Jefferson
21 points
  • Well frankly, both! Agree...balance...it's the percentages I need some help on! – Randy 13 years ago


I own a web design / development company and have a handfull of employees.

I wouldn't turn away business or current customers to work on this idea full time. You don't want to burn any existing bridges or contacts should your idea not get significant traction.

Keep your current customers happy, new customers tell them you are booked for the next couple months but would be happy to help them then. Work on your idea as much as you can including weekends.

Then, stop being lazy ;) hehe

answered Aug 11 '11 at 13:04
Ryan Doom
5,472 points
  • Very good points. Web Ascender is a nice site. – Randy 13 years ago
  • Thanks - I definitely overwork :] and am working on a product concepts nights and weekends right now too. I just replace TV time with coding time. I'll get cable one day. – Ryan Doom 13 years ago

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