In the world of employment, there are at least two species. There are those who want to take the corporate paycheck at regular intervals, to be sure that they have a job and, who, for the most part, are willing to put up with what the corporation deems to be necessary. Their jobs may be terrible, they may feel that their soul is sucked out on a regular basis, but the security of a paycheck is the ultimate ‘pearl without price.’ They are happy in the corporation, or at least not so miserable that they must leave. This is one career path to take.
Owning your job versus owning your business
When you work for another person or for a company, you exchange your time for a paycheck; this is the path described above. Although, when you have lost your job and are going to create a new life, you should ask yourself a simple question: Do you want to rent your time, or do you want to start a business? We’re not talking about working for a single company any more. Rather, we’re talking about creating independence. Think about the two types of independence:
Selling your own time: Do you want to sell your time as a professional to different people? In this case, you are becoming a consultant. You are selling your time and your expertise. You may incorporate technology into your offerings, so that it’s not pure time, but rather time+.
Selling the time of others: Or do you want to sell the services of people who work for you, or the use of technology that you develop? You may imbue people with your special expertise. However, and this is an important qualification; you have altered the nature of what you are doing. Now, you are selling something outside of yourself.
The easiest way to distinguish between choices #1 and #2 is to think about what would happen if you were to go on vacation for a year. Would you be as well off, or almost as well off, when you returned? If the answer is NO, then you own your job. If the answer is YES, even a somewhat nervous YES, then you own your own business.