College is a step toward adulthood for many, but the transition from bachelor’s degree to entrepreneur can feel a bit jarring. Keeping your chin up, a stiff upper-lip and other empty clichés everyone says to you can’t really prepare you for one really important truth: There isn’t a curriculum for adulthood. Knowing this, here are a few changes to expect when you take your first steps away from college and into starting you own business.
1. Attendance is always mandatory.
In college, you may have ditched class or ducked out early and still managed to pass. This isn’t going to fly in the startup world. Rain or shine, young treps need to show up and do so in a punctual fashion. Not only will it keep you in the loop of the day-to-day activities but will also set a good example for employees.
2. Scheduling isn’t set in stone.
Your Friday morning biology lab is finally over. What a relief. While you may be thanking your lucky stars you don’t have to roll out of bed after a crazy night to go and dissect a frog, don’t get too excited. Adult life and entrepreneurship means you’re beholden to a schedule of necessity rather than attendance sheets. As a young trep, you are the harbinger of your own success, meaning you sometimes will need to ask yourself to come in on a Saturday.
3. Free time isn’t free.
Just as there is no such thing as a free lunch, there is no such thing as “free time” in the world of startups. During college you may have had huge breaks between class or long holidays but startup reality is quite different. While most of your friends are working at finding a nine-to-five job and attending happy hour, you are slaving away at your business plan or putting out fires at your company. And that’s just the reality of being an entrepreneur — sacrificing free time in exchange for freedom.