Have you ever considered starting your own business?

SmartPulse -- our weekly nonscientific reader poll in SmartBrief on Leadership -- tracks feedback from more than 220,000 business leaders. We run the poll question each week in our newsletter.

Have you ever considered starting your own business?

  • Yes, I’ve started my own business and currently run it : 24.6%
  • Yes, I’ve thought about it but never made the leap: 52.8%
  • No, I’ve never seriously considered starting a business: 22.5%

Entrepreneurship isn’t for everyone. A long time ago I heard a quote that stated “an entrepreneur is the only person I know who’s willing to work 80 hours a week to avoid working 40 hours a week.” It’s not for the faint of heart. If you’re one of the 53% of people who have considered running your own business but haven’t made the leap, be sure to seek out real-world perspectives on what it takes to run your own firm. The challenges are numerous and you’ll be tested well beyond your expectations. That said, the rewards can be tremendous – ranging from control over your schedule, financial benefits, and job satisfaction. If you’re seriously considering taking the leap, an informed perspective can help you see how far you’ll really have to jump.

Mike Figliuolo is managing director of thoughtLEADERS. Before launching his own company, he worked at McKinsey & Co., Capital One and Scotts Miracle-Gro. He is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. He's the author of three leadership books: "One Piece of Paper," "Lead Inside the Box" and "The Elegant Pitch."