Start your Entrepreneurial Journey as an Employee
- July 15, 2018
- Posted by: Avril Fortuin
It may seem strange to start your entrepreneurial journey as an employee. But, what is smarter than being a paid employee while you get experience and learn about running a business?
There are many benefits to being an employee (aside from the salary); such as learning about work ethic (teamwork, accountability, punctuality, professionalism), business skills (financial management, supervision, taxes and legal things), business functionality (logistics, systems and processes), and much more.
The down-side to being an employee is that you are trading your ‘time for money’ and you do actually have to do a real job – like deliver results, so that you keep your job and get a good reference!
Your first steps towards owning a business might be to work in someone else’s business. We’re not recommending that for the long-term but in the short term working for someone else can be a smart move.
You can learn so much. You earn while you are learning. The experience you gain is worth even more than your salary!
When you think of your job as a stepping stone towards entrepreneurship, you realise there are many benefits. The biggest benefit might even be that you revise your Big Bold Business Dream to make it even more right-for-you.
For example, you might realise that opening and running a restaurant is not really your thing after all. While you love cooking and serving people delicious meals, maybe you can do it another way – without needing to own a restaurant.
On the job experience and learning can help you to figure what really matters and what is really feasible – without putting yourself into debt!
Becoming an employee doesn’t mean that your Big Bold Business Dream will never happen
You may be thinking that it’s all very well to have Big Bold Business Dreams, but taking a job will mean your entrepreneurial dream will never come about.
Listen, we’re African. We know that the daily reality is tough – kids, aging parents, sickness, lack of education or opportunities, unemployment, bills, debts, and too many people depending on you. These things can’t be ignored and they make your journey more complicated.
But as Africans, we’re also resilient and able to overcome obstacles. I believe you’re resourceful and solution focussed. With some thought and effort, and loads of patient persistence, you can find your way through most things.
To do our best, we should try to think longer term. Think a year ahead. Only thinking about tomorrow is too short-term.
If you think about a job as a stepping stone on your entrepreneurial journey, not your final destination, then there may be some sense to becoming an employee. If you don’t have a sustainable way to pay your bills, you will always be focussed on that burden and your progress towards your entrepreneurial dream will be difficult.
A job can be a short-term path you take on the journey to accomplishing your Big Bold Business Dream.
I believe you are resourceful and solution focussed. With some thought and effort, and loads of patient persistence, you can find your way through most things. I believe jumping hurdles is even easier when you think longer term. Think a year ahead. Only thinking about tomorrow is too short-term.
Whether you know your BIG dream or not, sitting idle isn’t going to get you anywhere. Your first step towards your destination, your vision, is to take a step, take action! Sometimes getting a job is a smart move – if you can make the work, work for you!
What to consider before you become an employee
The desire for independence and a salary leads many people to take the job that is available rather than waiting for a better opportunity. You shouldn’t be afraid to take a job and use the job to earn a salary and gain experience.
On the other hand you should always make a well-considered decision. You should know why you are becoming an employee and what you intend to gain from contributing as an employee in that specific job.
The important thing is to use the job as a step in your journey towards your Big Bold Business Dream. Make the work, work for you!
Make the work, work for you!
It might also be attractive for you to work part-time because it gives you time for your other obligations.
Alternatively you can do volunteer work to get experience, connections and learning opportunities! You could volunteer on weekends or evenings for a short period, to get more skills or to broaden your network.
There are so many things to consider before deciding to become an employee that I created this PDF for you to download. It covers 12 points for you to consider so that you are certain you are making the right decision for reasons that are right-for-you. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for the download.
Your entrepreneurial journey may seem unconventional to others, but it will be your path. If you need to take a job for a season, do so. Make the work, or study, work for you!
I love to hear from you so send me an email or make a comment below.