Self employment is uncertain, but it's also exciting

Dean - autistic freelance speaker

How you find opportunities for your own business will vary widely depending on the type of business you are looking to create and grow.

For example, if you want to be a public speaker, you might need to build a website to promote what you do, including references and case studies of talks you’ve given, whereas if you’re a dogsitter, it might be more helpful to print some leaflets and deliver them around the local neighbourhood and/or ask if you can put some in reception at the local vet or newsagent. The key is to understand where your customers are likely to be and how they might want to hear about what you do and how you can help them.

If you have an idea for a business and would like some support, you may be able to claim New Enterprise Allowance to help set up your business if you are over 18 and:

You will need to apply through your Job Coach at Job Centre Plus. If your application is accepted, you will get a mentor who will help you set up your business and develop a business plan. If your business plan is approved you may get a small allowance for six months and the opportunity to apply for a start-up loan to get the business going.

Being self-employed, you need to find all the answers out yourself and you're working it out as you go along

Dean - autistic freelance speaker

A useful guide to starting your own business is available from HM Revenue & Customs which explains how to set up your business, and about the tax that you will need to pay.

Dealing with the tax office is a skill in itself - I found that stressful

Dean - autistic freelance speaker