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3 Benefits of Entrepreneurship That Most Employees Never Get to Enjoy

by Melanie on March 14, 2014 · 16 comments

in entrepreneurs

Joe’s old cubicle. I never have to sit in one of these again!

The following article is from Mike, our staff writer. 

Not everyone is cut out to be an entrepreneur.  Many people don’t want the added responsibility of creating a business plan, keeping the books, hiring employees, dealing with vendors, finding new customers, and the myriad other details that business owners have to take care of on a daily basis.

Some people would rather just get up in the morning, go to work, and punch out at five o’clock every day.  They are perfectly content being an employee and have no interest in starting their own business.

And there’s nothing wrong with that.  You know how the old saying goes…

Different strokes for different folks.

Just remember that by passing on the entrepreneur lifestyle, you’ll be giving up a few benefits that most employees don’t get to enjoy.  For example…

1. Freedom

When you’re locked into a nine to five job, you don’t have much freedom or flexibility in how you spend your time.  You spend the day chained to your desk and following your manager’s direction.

But entrepreneurs have much more freedom both in terms of what they do and when they do it.  If you’re the boss, you make the strategic decisions rather than having orders handed down to you from above.  Plus you get to make your own schedule with as much flexibility as needed built in.

For example, if you are a freelance writer you’re able to work at your own pace.  Of course you have clients and deadlines to meet, but as long as you get the job done you can write whenever is convenient to you.  If you want to take a day off, that’s your decision.

2. Correlation Between Work and Reward

One of the things that frustrates me most about corporate jobs is that there is often no correlation at all between the job you do and the reward you receive.

In my company, raises are all standard across the board and you have to be a superstar just to get a half percent higher than everyone else.  When you think about how much effort is needed for such a paltry raise, it really doesn’t seem worth it.  Why bust your butt so the VP in the corner office can get all the credit?

On the other hand, when you’re an entrepreneur there is a more direct link between effort and reward.  For example, a graphic design artist who gets paid to create website headers and ebook covers knows that the more projects he completes the more he will get paid.  That can be a great motivator to keep you plugging away at your business.

3. Fulfillment

I don’t hate my day job but I don’t find it particularly fulfilling either.  Most people I know feel the same.  Work is work.  It’s what you do to pay the bills.

But it doesn’t have to be that way.  Starting a business or creating a product that you are passionate about can give you a sense of fulfillment that you can’t get from a traditional job.  Just watch an episode of Shark Tank and you’ll see one entrepreneur after another doing what makes them truly happy.

Whether your passion is sales, caring for animals, writing, developing new products, or assisting people in need…doing what you love is a surefire way to happiness.

What do you think about entrepreneurship? Would you try going out on your own or are you happy with your regular job?

Related articles:

When you have a dream job, you don’t spend a lot of time dreaming

7 Little Downsides of Being an Entreprenuer

5 Unusual Reasons Why I LOVE Self Employment

{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

moneystepper March 14, 2014 at 12:58 am

I think that the correlation between achievement and reward is the most appealing thing about being an entrepreneur. Working mega hours for not even a thank you gets fairly demoralising!

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Ernie Zelinski March 14, 2014 at 1:31 am

I was fired from my Engineering job over 30 years ago for taking over two months of unapproved vacation. Although I didn’t know it at the time, that was the best thing
that ever happened to me. I have not had a real job ever since and have no clue about Engineering any more.

This quote resonates with me big time:

“Have you ever heard of a wage slave? Even worse . . . are you one? Wage slaves may live in big houses. They might drive Porsches. It doesn’t matter how “rich” you look, if you can’t walk away from your job — even for a second — because you would no longer be able to pay the bills, you’re a wage slave.”
— Sara Glakas

Call me an “entrepreneur” or whatever you want to call me (some people call me a bum). But you can’t call me a wage slave. I may have lived under the poverty line for several years but I now work only one or two hours a day and make an income higher than over 90 percent of corporate workers. In my opinion, hard work is for muddleheads. It’s how smart you work that counts.

Here is an excerpt from my book “Career Success Without a Real Job (The Career Book for People Too Smart to Work in Corporations)” that gives an idea of the prosperity and freedom that you can attain from escaping the corporate world and entering the world of solo-entrepreneurship:

Irrefutable Signs That You Have Achieved Career Success Without a Real Job:
* You no longer know how to prepare for job interviews and don’t care that you don’t know.
* You wonder why people get up before 9:30 a.m.
* Most people with real jobs criticize or envy you.
* You rely on job ads rather than the Dilbert cartoon for your laugh of the day.
* You are always the last one to know when there is a holiday for working people and you happily work your usual three or four hours anyway.
* You don’t ever need any job references.
* You no longer have a Daytimer because you forget to look in it after making an entry.
* Multitasking means working on your laptop in a coffee bar for two hours and watching attractive members of the opposite sex at the same time.
* You know what resume means but have completely forgotten what résumé means.
* You are confident that you will have no problem adjusting to retirement.
* You forget to set your clocks ahead or behind one hour and there are no consequences.
* You realize that prosperity does not require hard work or having lots of material possessions — just creativity, personal freedom, and work that enriches you.
* You have no financial problems because you save more money than most people who earn twice as much as you.
* You can go a whole year without having to set an alarm clock.
* You feel sorry for people who have to work at a real job — even those earning a million a year.
* You have great friends and spend a lot of time with them, even dropping your work entirely for two or three days when a friend from out of town comes to visit.
* Working at your unreal job connects you to all that is bigger than you.
* You enjoy your unreal job; thus, you can be both at work and not at work simultaneously.
* You get much more enjoyment out of the work you do than from the monetary rewards.
* You know you are no longer employable in a real job and don’t care.
* You try to keep an open mind about hard-working lawyers, executives, and doctors but you still can’t help feeling just a bit superior.
* You wouldn’t trade your present livelihood for anything else — bar none!

You are right with your comment: “Starting a business or creating a product that you are passionate about can give you a sense of fulfillment that you can’t get from a traditional job.”

Fact is, there are many people who work at a job (even a high-paying one) for 45 years and they can’t point to anything specific and creative that they have generated as their own. On the other hand, if you have created a unique business or a funky product with your own original idea, you can feel an incredible sense of accomplishment and satisfaction that uncreative people will never experience.

Ernie J. Zelinski
The Prosperity Guy
“Helping Adventurous Souls Live Prosperous and Free”
Author of the Bestseller “How to Retire Happy, Wild, and Free”
(Over 200,000 copies sold and published in 9 languages)
and the International Bestseller “The Joy of Not Working’
(Over 275,000 copies sold and published in 17 languages)

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The Stoic March 14, 2014 at 3:45 am

# 1 ranks very high with me. I’ve been on the fence leaning towards doing my own thing, but even with the benefits you have listed it can be a little intimidating when you’re just starting out.

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No Nonsense Landlord March 14, 2014 at 5:19 am

Do not forget, tax advantages, and the ability to dream even larger. There is no limit. you are 100% in control of your destiny.

I think you will find successful entrepreneurs work more than 40 hours per week, and actually have less freedom, but they enjoy it more.

I find that as I get older, my full-time job gets more in the way of doing stuff that I like to do.

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Mom @ Three is Plenty March 14, 2014 at 6:23 am

I think it all depends on the job you have. I’ve lucked into a “corporate” job that allows me all of these things. We’re also very small and my boss (the company owner) trusts me to make decisions that need to be made from a business perspective. *Most* corporate jobs don’t have these perks, but some do!

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Jamie V March 14, 2014 at 7:34 am

I’d love to leave my job to be an entrepreneur and do my own thing. But I haven’t been able to figure out what it is I want to do, or can sell, or anything really to get me on that path. So I am stuck here. But kudos to everyone who does it and succeeds!

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Brian March 25, 2014 at 11:43 am

That sounds pretty much like me and I bet a lot of other people too…

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aB March 14, 2014 at 7:35 am

“Plus you get to make your own schedule with as much flexibility as needed built in.”
Double-edged sword here. I know of a few cases where people really need to take a break, it’s not always worth it.

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davidmichael March 14, 2014 at 9:53 am

I have done both, that is, a community college teacher for 16 years, and a small company CEO for 16 years. The truth is I enjoyed both ways of making a living very much. I think part of this change in jobs or vocations has to do with stages of life as well. The famous mid-life crisis affects many of us as we go from 30 to 40 to 45 to 50. Our dreams lay bare as we enter mid-life wondering what happened …with wife, kids, house, mortgage, debt, stress, obligations, rat race, etc, etc.

I’d like to say that being an entrepreneur is the be-all and end-all. It isn’t. In fact, it’s damn hard work with the strong possibility of failure. Only 1 out of 5 businesses succeed within a five year term. I used to work about 35-40 hours at teaching once I mastered my assignments after five years or so. The benefits were incredible, and especially the retirement package. With my own company, however, my work week moved into 70 to 80 hours a week without any assurence of success. Once you hire full-time employees, then the whole game changes. Responsibilities, stress, and pressure rocket upwards a hundred fold.

In summary, I read these blogs where the bloggers who succeed exclaim the benefits of their success. In truth, very few people make money in the blogging world and certainly not $100,000 a year. So, I advise caution. Don’t leave your day job just because you are bored or hate your cubicle. Try out your new work ideas part-time or until you have saved enough to live for one or two years, because unless your spouse is working to bring in additional income, you’ll probably need it. I have met people who hated their jobs, made top money, and saved millions for an incredible retirement (lawyers in particular). And, I have met others who created their work, made very little, enjoyed the process, and retired to social security. Life is what you make it. There are no guarantees!

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Brian March 25, 2014 at 11:46 am

Well said.

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Dividend Mantra March 14, 2014 at 8:07 pm

Interesting take here. I agree with the rundown.

I’m actually an employee (I work at a car dealership 50+ hours per week), an entrepreneur (I blog for 20+ hours per week), and an investor (with 45 different equity holdings), and I can say for sure that being an employee sucks.

How anyone could ever want to be under the control of someone else with no true freedom is beyond me. Reminds me of Plato’s Cave. Some people would prefer to stay in chains and look at shadows on the wall because it’s easy. I’d rather break free from the cave and live my life on my terms.

Best wishes!

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Marie Zalbe March 14, 2014 at 9:45 pm

Here in country entrepreneurs earn easy money. Filipinos were taught to be employees unlike the Chinese were they taught to be entrepreneurs. We were grown up to be a worker rather than a boss. So, entrepreneurs are a lot of wiser because they can own money on their own.

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Financial Samurai March 15, 2014 at 6:31 pm

Mike, what have been your biggest challenges and rewards as an entrepreneur? When and how did you decide to leave your FT job? I’m always interested in how people decided to take the leap.

Thx!

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Daisy March 17, 2014 at 6:28 am

I would say that I do get a certain amount of fulfillment from my day job, but I personally would like more freedom. Specifically to work from where I want, and when I want. We have to abide by the 9-5 office rules. I wish I could work from home sometimes, in the evening if I preferred it.

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Tom @ financeandFlipFlops March 17, 2014 at 9:51 pm

I agree with you on 2 and 3 but have to disagree on 1. There may be excretions to the rule, but for the most part as an entrepreneur you work like a dog, mostly because you know the buck has to end with you. The employee in salary at your company wants to check out at 5, they don’t have nearly as much skin in the game. If your company fails, they can just find another job while you may be left with debt or a lot of lost money that you sunk in.

I have the utmost respect for entrepreneurs, they are what drives the economy and are willing to take big risks, which is why the winners deserve the big rewards.

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Tom March 20, 2014 at 6:52 am

*exceptions, not excretions… although that word may have been applicable as well, auto correct did not get what I was trying to say haha.

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