I am an entrepreneur or self-employed person. The terminology is not important, but the reasoning as to why I am self-employed does matter. When I worked for others, I felt completely out of control. I worked for people who were mean, abusive, and who gave me no instruction as to how to do my job. If I did something they didn’t like I found out loud and clear after the fact, but not before.
Then, there were other jobs where I was expected to underperform. The employers were city governments in California where my teaching was supposed to be “dumbed down” so that nobody would learn. The minute I started actually trying to teach people English as a Second Language in a more intense way where students got more engaged I got called into the head office and was given a lecture. “Use the book we gave you.” Yes, that was the book where the students fell asleep and so did I. Snore…
There were other jobs where I did a good job but was bussed around like a slave, and was paid slave wages. How can anyone be satisfied in life when you make almost no money, get no work satisfaction and are treated like a slave? There must be a solution. It is called being self-employed.
As a self-employed person, the nightmare of slavery is replaced by a new nightmare. The nightmare of having steady clientele. It is really not that hard after you have mastered the art of getting clients, understanding how long they will stick around, and knowing why they like or dislike your service. The trick is to always have more clients than you know how to deal with. That way you’ll have enough cash coming in at all times which means the end of the cash crunch nightmare. You might have a new nightmare though — the not having enough time for yourself nightmare.
Time management is something which I am continuously trying to master, and with limited success. The problem is that once I find an efficient way to do one task, I use the free time to do something else, and am once again “too busy.” Prioritizing and creating routines helps, but in the long run, I feel I don’t have my life refined yet. But, on a brighter note, my feelings of helplessness have been diminished due to the fact that I am in control of most of my life. And whatever I’m not in control of, I’m sure Donald Trump, Bernie ior Hillary will figure something out that will help. That way if something goes wrong, I can blame it on politics.
However, there is a final point I want to make which will get you to really think. If you work for someone else, but have mastered your skills to a point that few others will ever attain, you have control over your boss. Your boss cannot easily fire you without a huge risk and probably a huge loss in long term business. You can use your superior skills to have leverage over your boss. I am in this position — in reverse which is why I understand the situation. It is the old scenario of the brewery owner vs. the brewmaster. The brewmaster has more power, because only he has mastered the art of creating the product. Additionally, these days especially, sticking to the same job year after year gives you tremendous leverage. Few employees these days last more than eighteen months. If you are steady, skilled and reliable, the boss can’t easily fire you. You can use that to have leverage.
To sum it up, whether you work for someone else or yourself, it is your superior skills, reliability, and collection of multiple skills that give you power. If you are one of these people who say, “I only like doing such and such” you might have trouble getting ahead. Those who get ahead do what needs to be done masterfully whether they like it or not!