339: What if entrepreneurship isn’t the best option for you

There is a painful truth is that not everybody is cut out to be a business owner. My fear is that people who are listening to this show wake up in 10 years underpaid, overworked, and have a business that isn’t worth enough money. They’ve bought themselves a job.

Owning a business is freaking hard. Owning a business that puts food on the table is easy; you put the work in and you get paid. But you’re not an entrepreneur, you own a job, and your business owns you. My version of success is generational wealth and having freedom with my time. Taking yourself out of your company is very very hard. Maybe 5% of the people who start a small business actually achieve the separation of time and wealth.

A rewarding job, a W-2 job that’s well compensated and where you’re working with people that you like is the best way for most people to maximize happiness and long-term enjoyment. I’m tired of people shaming W-2 workers, or saying that being an entrepreneur is the only way to go. Entrepreneurship is fantastic for the people who are cut out for it, but it’s not for everybody. We should shame business owners who are overworked, underpaid, and unsuccessful, because many of them sacrifice their family life and health for underpaid jobs.

Remote work has allowed people who are serious badasses to get real freedom of their time in a W-2 job. They can work 20-30 hours a week and do what they want for the rest of their time while making good money. I have a friend who works remotely and travels the country in a Sprinter van, and there’s no shame in choosing that over chasing entrepreneurship.

How do you achieve success and happiness if you have a job? You delegate and stand up for yourself. Bosses will lean on busy employees to get things done, it’s only natural to throw your problems at your best people. Good employees are good at saying no and delegating. Just like I manage expectations with my customers and partners, good employees manage expectations with their boss and coworkers. If your job owns you, if you have no work-life balance, it’s your fault, even if you’re an employee.

Owning a business isn’t right for everybody. You hear stories about how awesome it is, about the successes, but the truth is that it’s not right for everyone. It doesn’t matter if you’re a great lawn care expert, painter, or mover. If you’re going to be successful in your company, you won’t be performing the service for long, and that’s when you need to become an entrepreneur. I encourage everybody to give it a low-risk shot but don’t be discouraged if it’s not for you.

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About Me

I started the Sweaty Startup in December of 2018 because I believe the Shark Tank and Tech Crunch culture is ruining the real spirit of low-risk entrepreneurship.