7 pitfalls to making your hobby a business

The work is time-consuming

One of the first lessons that Erin Francis learned when she started selling cake pops to her co-workers was that there was a difference between baking on weekends and turning the kitchen into an assembly line to accommodate orders.

"It took so much more time (to fill an order) than I thought it was going to," says Francis, a full-time legal assistant who runs a Richmond Hill, Ontario-based baking business Cake Pop It Like It's Hot on the side.

For creative entrepreneurs, balancing a 40-hour-per-week gig with a fledgling business can be one of the biggest challenges. You will need to set boundaries to keep a passion project from becoming overwhelming.

To keep from burning out, Francis requires customers to place orders in advance and places a cap on the number of orders she’ll accept at one time. She still pulls a few all-nighters, but the workflow is easier to manage.