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Starting your own business

Two women sitting at a laptop talking

Becoming self-employed, freelancing or starting a business are increasingly popular and viable career options for graduates.

You may like the idea of variety and being your own boss. And you may feel that corporate life will constrain you or that the traditional careers in your specialism offer little excitement or risk.

The rewards can be high, particularly if your product or service proves successful and your business attracts external interest. But the risks are great and can make life challenging.


The benefits of starting your own business include:

  • you're in control of your own business and how it is run
  • it enables you to demonstrate creativity and innovation
  • it offers you a wide variety of experience at work
  • you're likely to develop strong business skills, from finance through to sales and marketing
  • you may be able to exploit technical knowledge from your studies
  • it offers potential to make real money if you can make it work.

Issues to consider

You'll need adequate funding to begin and maintain business during the start-up phase. And you may find that you don't have all the business skills you will need from the start.

Any income generated will be variable and possibly negligible in the early years. It's also worth noting that starting your own business can leave little time for other areas of your life.

You'll also need to think about what you'll do, and have a fallback plan, if your business is not successful.


SPARK is the Annual Ideas Competition for Cardiff University students and graduates, with an overall shared prize pot of over £20,000 worth of cash and support available.

Seek out support

We recommend that you get advice on what funding is available and learn more about how Cardiff University Enterprise and Start-up Team can help you develop entrepreneurial skills.

If you're a Welsh speaker, you can also contact Menter a Busnes, which is an agency promoting entrepreneurship among Welsh speakers.

We can provide help and support regarding any aspect of starting up a business:

Enterprise Team