Why do I want to be an entrepreneur was a question I got asked so many times when I first uttered that I wanted to be one at school. The question was asked of me so many times that in the end I stopped telling people! In reality, I should have just perfected my answer (which of course has changed several times throughout my adult life)
Becoming an entrepreneur seems like a waste of time for some people (especially those happy with the 9 – 5) and yet for me it seems literally like the only path there is to take. This post is a friendly reminder to myself of all the reasons why I should keep pushing forward to reach my goal of becoming an entrepreneur plus a good reference point for all other aspiring entrepreneurs.
What is an Entrepreneur today?
In today’s world, even the definition of an entrepreneur has a rather large question mark over it. Do side hustles count? What about businesses started part-time or in someone’s spare time? The actual definition of an entrepreneur according to a quick google search is:
“a person who sets up a business or businesses, taking on financial risks in the hope of profit.”
Still confused? Entrepreneurship as a definition in some ways is in the eye of the beholder. In particular, the older generation prefer to be referred to as their profession than as an entrepreneur. One of my friends husbands left his 9 – 5 job to set up a garage, which is very successful. Technically he is an entrepreneur as he absorbed all the financial risks himself, but he calls himself a mechanic and likes to be thought of as a sole trader.
In layman’s terms, an entrepreneur is someone who creates a business themselves that is separate from the 9 – 5 jobs. They are not the employee in the company in the sense that they can not take a wage whether the company does well or not. Nor are they sheltered from any risks the business takes on such as bad debt or loan repayments. They absorb all the risks of the company. The upside of this is they also reap the rewards – dividends, complete control over every decision along with the satisfaction of owning a successful business.
With the basics cleared up, lets get back to the real question – Why be an entrepreneur.
My Desk, My Space, My Set up.
One word for you – hot desking, I hate hot desking with a capital H. The prospect of walking into the office one day and finding out I didn’t have a desk for the day literally gave me nightmares. I break out in a cold sweat now just thinking about it. All the wasted time and effort on chasing up missing chairs, finding your favorite stapler after it had been “borrowed” by a colleague along with the threat of hot desking being held over me is enough to make me run for the duvet.
Not anymore. My office is usually how I left it (I am a parent after all so its not unusual for the Littlest Little Miss Fire to “rearrange my desk for me”) No longer am I searching the corridor looking for my stationary. I also have complete control over all my IT equipment (for better or worse) I no longer have to justify why I require two screens or deal with a faulty mouse.
I appreciate to some people that the reasons outlines above don’t seem particularly stress inducing, however for me they used to be a real source of terror.
My Hours, My Choice
Gone are the days of having to plead for leave to cover childcare with my boss. No longer do I have to justify time off to look after a poorly family member or return to work straight after a funeral. My daughter no longer needs to be dragged out of bed to get to breakfast club for 8am and she never has to attend after school club (she was usually the last one there too) Now she simply attends the clubs she wants to and I am always available for the precious moments such as sports days, class assembly and all the other bits and bobs that get thrown in at short notice.
When I’m feeling too ill to work, I can sit in bed with my PJ’s on and still get stuff done. I’m also immune from all the bad weather disruption that happens so often in the UK. Icy roads and frozen pavements? No problem for me as my office is in my house!
I get things done.
Every job I have ever worked in felt like I was running on a treadmill. No matter how hard I ran I never actually seemed to get anywhere. The amount of effort I put in, never really seemed to amount to much either. If I did above and beyond, I was then expected to go above and beyond every single time. It felt like a complete waste of time since I was never really appreciated.
Now the correlation between effort and effect is obvious. If I do nothing, then nothing gets done. If I work my behind off then the results come pouring in. Its much more positive in the production of workflow too since getting results gives a great rush that makes you want to do more and more.
Avoidance of the blame game
Ever been the victim of the blame game at work? Even when you weren’t playing? One of my jobs had a rather sophisticated IT system that tracked the last person who physically touched the file. It meant that if a file ever went missing, managers could cleverly track who the last one to have the file was. The only flaw to this system was there was no way of enforcing people to actually track the file in the system when they touched it. This resulted in the real culprit going unnoticed since they simply didn’t scan the bar code of the file when they touched it!
None of that now – the buck starts and stops with me. If I make a mistake, I own it. More importantly I learn to fix it and move on. Its amazing to think of all the issues I’ve faced whilst beginning my journey to entrepreneurship.
Its easy to see being an entrepreneur as something rather unobtainable or to hold it up on a high pedestal. Detailing all the reasons that its important to me can now act as a compass to keep me following the right path. There are plenty of reasons why people aspire to entrepreneurship.
I’d love to hear from you if you are an entrepreneur or aspiring entrepreneur. Where are you on your money making journey? What are your reasons?
Leave a comment below and share your story with me.