Tag Archive for 'Jim'

Dispelling the myths of ownership

As the economy recovers, you’re likely to meet a starry-eyed human babbling on about becoming a business owner.

Probing for the object of this person’s entrepreneurial infatuation will precipitate the what, where, how and when questions and, finally, the most important question: Why do you want to own a business? Answers to this last question, unfortunately, often produce what I call, “The Myths of Small Business Ownership.” Here are four:

Myth 1: When I’m an owner, I’ll be my own boss.
That’s right; you won’t have an employer telling you what to do. But you’ll trade that one boss for many others: customers, landlords, bankers, the IRS, regulators, even employees.

Modern management is less “bossing” and more leading, managing and partnering. In a small business, everyone must wear several hats and the dominator management model doesn’t work well in this modern multi-tasking environment.

Myth 2: When I own my own business I won’t have to work as hard as I do now.
This is actually true, you will work much harder. Ramona Arnett, CEO of Ramona Enterprises, said it best: “Owning a business means working 80 hours a week so you can avoid working 40 hours for someone else.”

The irony is you will actually want to work harder when you understand that everything in your business belongs to you. Even the irritating, frustrating and frightening challenges will take on a new perspective when you realize that you also own the opportunities you turn them into. You’ll turn the lights on in the morning and off in the evening not because you want to work more, but because you won’t want to miss any part of your entrepreneurial dream coming true.

Myth 3: When I own my own business I can take a day off whenever I want.
Well, maybe. However, you may find that your business has such a compelling attraction that you won’t want to take off. Indeed, it’s more likely that whatever interests you had as an employee will become jealous of your business.

Myth 4: When I own my own business, I’ll make a lot of money.
If the only reason you want to own a business is to get rich, you probably won’t be a happy owner. It’s true ¬ you actually could get rich. But it’s more likely that you’ll just make a living.

Being a successful business owner first means loving what you do. Pursuing wealth should be secondary and, ironically, is actually more likely to happen when in this subordinate role.

Find a higher level of happiness

Did you know that there is actually a level of happiness, higher than your garden variety happiness, that can be attained by knowing that you are happy, and knowing why you are happy? Consider this quote from Henry Miller,

“It is good to be happy; it’s a little better to know that you’re happy; but to understand that you’re happy and know why and how … and still be happy, be happy in the being and the knowing, well that is beyond happiness, that is bliss.”

I like that thought, but reading it made me coin a new term: happiness-squared, or H2 for short. I like that better than bliss. Bliss is such a presumptuous word, don’t you think?

Here’s the question: What makes you happy? No, really. Think about it this time. Close your eyes, take two deep breaths and think about what is most important in your life; because that is where your happiness comes from. Might be children, work, creating, faith, things like that. Not money. Not stuff. If money and stuff are what you think makes you happy, I propose that you aren’t really happy.

Here’s the challenge: Work hard, create, build, yeah, make money, too. But don’t forget where real happiness comes from. Work on attaining some of the H2.

On The Small Business Advocate Show I’ve talked with two of my Brain Trust members, Jim Ballard and Jim Donovan, on how to be in charge of your own happiness. Jim Ballard is a management consultant, leadership trainer, motivational speaker, consulting partner with the Ken Blanchard Companies, and author of What’s the Rush? and Whale Done. Jim Donovan is an international bestselling author whose books include Handbook to a Happier Life and This is Your Life, Not a Dress Rehearsal, and his latest Don’t Let an Old Person Move Into Your Body. Take a few minutes to click on one of our discussions below and leave your thoughts on what makes you happy.

The paradox of happiness with Jim Ballard

Are you able to be happy with what you have? with Jim Donovan

Are you taking charge of your own happiness? with Jim Donovan




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