We Are All a Business
We just don’t realize it
“I’m not a businessman, I’m a business man!” Jay-Z
In a comparative study focused on well-being in terms of job satisfaction, it found that self-employed individuals are, on average, significantly more satisfied in their work than traditionally employed people.
This, according to a survey of around 5,000 employees conducted by the University of Sheffield and the University of Exeter in the UK.
This feeling of satisfaction is not exclusive to just free-lancers or entrepreneurs. Everyone can unlock the benefits of self-employment with a very simple change of perspective.
All of us, our businesses, we just don’t look at ourselves like that. Viewing yourself as a business will put you in the right mindset to become happier with your work.
When you are a business, you are in control. When you see an opportunity, you can quickly move to capitalize. When a part of your business starts dragging, you either invest more in, or you move on from it.
Viewing yourself as a business is not difficult. You do not need an MBA or business background. Heck, you don’t even need to know anything about money. Well, maybe a little, but we can wait on that.
What is your product?
Every business sells a product. For Apple, it is the iPhone, for Costco, it is bulk groceries, for Microsoft, it is software. We also sell a product. For most of us, it is called a job.
If you are an accountant, you sell your accounting knowledge to your employer. If you are an engineer, you sell your engineering expertise. The list goes on and on.
The reason you probably don’t view yourself as a business is that you probably only have one customer. Your employer. Depending on your circumstances, that customer might be all you need financially. But if you aren’t satisfied with your work. Or you don’t think your customer is paying you enough. It could be time to start looking for more customers or a new product offering.
I know the last thing you want to do after work is to do more work, that is not what I am saying. What I am saying is we all have the potential to sell different products. We have more skills than the one skill our employer is paying us for.
Not many businesses are able to survive only offering one product, and neither should we. Apple sells more than the iPhone. You need to start looking at your interests, skills and passions and see where you can start getting more customers.
Maybe that is selling some of your extra plants from your garden or selling handmade wedding invitations. We all have more products to offer the world than just our 9 to 5. It is time to start selling that product.
How do you react to the market?
Any good business is able to react to the market. Businesses that are slow to react, cough cough Kodak, don’t stick around too long.
Companies that are able to react to the market and reinvent themselves are the ones that we all recognize and talk about. The best example of this is Amazon. Twenty years ago, they were selling books online, now they are selling everything to us online.
Not only that, but they are basically powering the internet with Amazon Web Services (AWS). Every episode of The Office you watch is getting to your screen through AWS.
If Amazon can go from selling books online to essentially dominating the world, I think we can sell one more product and widen our customer base.
Throw away the thought that you are going to be able to get one degree when you are 22, and that same skill-set is going to last you till your 65. Not going to happen. Instead, like Amazon, we need to keep our ear to the ground and be nimble enough to react to a changing market.
What that means for everyone reading this article, learn to code. If you can’t code, you will go the way of Kodak, not of Amazon. Kodak didn’t think the computer or the internet was going to be a big deal. Not saying you have to become a software engineer, but not understanding code in the future is going to be like not knowing PowerPoint today.
Please don’t be Kodak.
How This Makes You Happier
Once you start viewing yourself as a business, you now start seeing the world through a lens of opportunity. When you are an employee, you go into work, and your boss tells you what to do. But when you are the CEO of your own company, you get to call the shots.
You still have to do what your boss says, he/she is probably your highest paying customer. But, once you leave those four walls, your opportunities are endless.
Once you are a business, you no longer save. Instead, you invest for growth. How you invest that money all depends on your business. Will your business benefit from a nicer camera for YouTube videos, or does your office need an upgrade, aka new house.
The purchases will probably be the same, but the way you feel about them will be a lot different.
When you are an employee, saving is something you do because you have to. When you are a business, saving is fun because it means you are growing!
You are now (Fill-In Your Name) Inc.
Not actually, but you get the gist.
Whether you are an employee at a large corporation or a gardening hobbyist selling your produce at a farmer’s market, you are a business.
Now that you realize that you are a business it is time to go start acting like one
Product Offering: What ways outside of your job are you going to make money?
Reacting to the Market: What skills and capabilities are you going to add to your current offering?
Investing in the Future: What growth opportunity are you investing in?
I hope you are as pumped up as I am! If you enjoyed this read but still want more help with where to go next, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you and until next time!