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Entrepreneurship. en·tre·pre·neur A person who organizes and manages any enterprise, esp. a business, usually with considerable initiative and risk. . Presented by Bill Nicholson January 10, 2007. Overview. Introduction Description of the Business Customer Profile

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A person who organizes and manages any enterprise, esp. a business, usually with considerable initiative and risk.

Presented by Bill Nicholson

January 10, 2007

  • Introduction
  • Description of the Business
  • Customer Profile
  • Want to be Self-Employed?
  • The Three Types of Employment
  • Final Thoughts
  • Q&A
who is this guy
Who is This Guy?


  • UC Graduate - BSES
  • A+, ACE, MCP
  • Adjunct Instructor, CSTCC
  • Self-employed for 16 years
  • Real Jobs: General Motors, Cincinnati Milacron,etc.
description of the business
Description of the Business
  • Anything that is computer-related
    • Software Development
    • Networking
    • Repair & Upgrades
    • New Hardware
    • Training
    • Consulting
    • Hand-Holding
description of the business5
Description of the Business

Multi-modal analysis of non-linear operational constructs and application of digital techniques to enhance, support, streamline, and de-obfuscate subjective processes, with emphasis on remuneration enhancement.

description of the business6
Description of the Business

“Apply computer technology

to make people happy

so they will give me money.”


Description of the Business

  • C++
  • Design / Consulting
  • VB
  • ASP .Net
  • SQL Server
  • Access
  • HTML
  • Windows 2003 Server / Linux

Description of the Business

  • Ongoing relationships with customers
  • Support a manageable number of customers
  • Always be on the lookout for potential new customers
  • Be available 24-7
  • Build relationships
customer profile
Customer Profile
  • Eclectic
  • College:
  • Defense Contractor:
  • Contractor:
  • Logistics:
a typical customer is not high tech
A Typical Customer is not High Tech

Customer Profile

  • They are profit-oriented
  • They expect results
  • They trust me to suggest and implement new technology
how do i charge
How do I Charge?
  • Hourly Rate
    • T&M (Time and Materials)
    • Establish the rate before starting
    • Plumbers charge for travel time. Should we?
how do i charge14
How do I Charge?
  • Project Rate
    • Provide a quote or a proposal
    • A proposal is an analog device
how do i charge15
How do I Charge?
  • Value-Based Rate
    • Mr. Customer: What is this software worth to you?
how do i charge16
How do I Charge?
  • Speculation
    • Write the code for free and hopefully reap the benefits down the road.
    • Working “on spec” is risky.
    • The cost of your labor is not tax-deductible
want to be self employed
Want to be Self-Employed?
  • Work your own hours
  • Pick your own projects
  • Keep everything you earn
  • Make all the decisions
  • Avoid the office politics
still want to be
Still want to be…?
  • No company softball team
  • No Christmas Party
  • No retirement plan
  • No benefits / health insurance
  • No paid vacation
  • No steady paycheck
  • No promotions
  • Collections
how to get started
How to get Started
  • Consider a part-time ‘real job’.
  • Contact the placement agencies
    • Emphasize your willingness to work part-time
how to get started20
How to get Started
  • Don’t be picky
    • Repair
    • Programming
    • Consulting
    • Networking
    • Design
    • Hand-holding
short term
Short Term
  • Time management is critical
  • Can you deal with not knowing what you’ll be doing next week?
  • Next month?
customer relations
Customer Relations
  • Court your customers
customer relations23
Customer Relations
  • Don’t commit to anything
    • “Probably”
    • “I think we can do that”
    • “We’ll try to get that accomplished”
customer relations24
Customer Relations
  • Email
  • Christmas gifts
  • No charge for telephone calls
customer relations25
Customer Relations
  • Identify the decision makers
    • Owner
    • Secretary
    • Sales Manager
customer relations26
Customer Relations
  • Recognizable technology can get you in the door.
  • Microsoft sells (sorry!)
types of employment
Types of Employment
  • Direct Employee
    • Paid by the company you work for
    • Usually an open-ended relationship
types of employment28
Types of Employment
  • Contract Employee
    • You are paid by a third-party, usually a placement service.
    • Usually a closed-end or short-term agreement.
    • You are employed by and at the mercy of the placement service.
    • Usually a full-time commitment.
    • Be wary of tax ramifications
types of employment29
Types of Employment
  • Self-Employed
    • You bill the customer
    • You collect the fee
    • You pay the Self Employment Tax
    • You file a Schedule C
    • You deduct your expenses
beware of tax implications
Beware of Tax Implications

Types of Employment

  • Someone will pay the extra 7.65%
beware of tax implications31
Beware of Tax Implications
  • You know you’re not self-employed if…
    • Your employer provides you a desk, a place to work, a computer, and other tools.


    • Your employer determines your working hours


    • You receive a W-2 form at tax time
legal requirements
Legal Requirements

You are considered self-employed and subject to self-employment tax laws if you:

  • carry on your own trade or business
  • have a profit motivation for your business activity
  • operate your business in a regular manner
  • are a sole proprietor
  • are an independent contractor
  • work full or part-time in the business endeavor
  • have a net profit of $400.00 or more
  • have a net profit of $100.00 or more as an employee of a church electing exemption from Social Security Withholdings

final thoughts
Final Thoughts
  • No one has ever asked me for my GPA
  • Don’t let emotions interfere with business
  • Be prepared to retrain yourself constantly
final thoughts34
Final Thoughts

This is a people business

Edsger Dijkstra is often quoted as saying, "Computer science is no more about computers than astronomy is about telescopes."