Are Entrepreneurs Happier Than Employees?

entrepreneurIt’s 9:30 at night and here I am still working. I was invited to go to a party, but had to turn it down because I still have orders to box up and writing that needs to be finished. That’s been happening a lot lately. Glad that there is work, but when you run a business there is always work to be done. It never ends. It made me wonder “Are entrepreneurs happier than employees?”

The other day I was invited to lunch. I can’t even remember the last time I was able to take a real lunch in the middle of the day that wasn’t eaten at my desk. I’m kind of hoping for a little stability right now, so I can take even an hour off and do something, like watch a movie. It’s times like this that I envy my friends that have real jobs. Okay, I don’t envy them too much because they’re sitting in cubicles all day being told what to do. Just a little stability would be nice.

A recent Gallup poll reveals how Americans feel about their jobs and how happy they are with them. 71% of Americans are not engaged in their work. In other words, they are emotionally disconnected from their jobs. This means they’re also more likely to be more unproductive when they are at work. [Read more…]

Are You Brave Enough to be an Entrepreneur?

entrepreneurial risk taker I just found out that I was quoted in a Romanian textbook on entrepreneurship. Hhmm…     Romania of all places. The quote had something to do with entrepreneurs being risk takers, a trait that all of us in that club share.

I used to think that anyone could be an entrepreneur. Now I’m not so sure. I do a live and online webinar/seminar called “Create Your Own Job” and it’s all about creating jobs the entrepreneurial way. Not about how to start a business, but how to create unique jobs.

As I talk to people to get their input, I’m struck by how many people are afraid of taking even the tiniest risk. Terrified of picking up the phone to call a stranger or doing anything beyond their comfort zone. Many would rather wait until they get a job where someone else tells them what to do and how to do it. Even if it takes months of looking. Even if they have to take a job they hate for low wages. [Read more…]

Are Your Customers Getting the Red Carpet Treatment?

Have you ever called someone, and as soon as you say who you are you hear a letdown in their voice, like they were expecting the lottery committee, but instead they got a telemarketer? What if it had been Brad Pitt or… fill in the blank with your favorite celebrity. Which way do you treat your customers? Are your customers getting the red carpet treatment?

red carpet

red carpet

After working in the entertainment industry for many years I’ve seen the lowliest nobody suddenly being hounded by everybody once they make it to a certain level. And the same people turn on a dime when they are no longer in that position. And it’s happened to me twice. The first time I was hosting a TV show and working behind the scenes in the role of producer. Saturday Night Live was at its peak and we had some of their writers writing the show. Broadway dancers doing the introduction. And Billy Joel’s arranger writing the music for my segment.

It was great. I was fielding calls from people I never imagined I would even be able to get on the phone. And they wanted to be in our TV pilot. I also got tickets to just about anything I wanted to see on Broadway. Shows I could never afford on an actor/waiter’s salary. Tickets to the hottest parties in town and dinners in the nicest restaurants. People were thrilled when I called, or at least they acted like they were. [Read more…]

Is the Entrepreneurial Spirit Dead?

I’ve agonized about putting up this post because the last think I want to do is kill the entrepreneurial spirit. Life is hard enough for the entrepreneur, but with 80,000 pages of new regulations coming out every year in America it’s getting harder to keep that spirit alive.kid entrepreneurs

You know the saying “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade”? Well, it appears the only people who can do that are the ones that teams of lawyers and employees ready to deal with the mountain of paperwork and regulations they will have to abide by.

When I read this article, it really made me sad:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/erikkain/2011/08/03/the-inexplicable-war-on-lemonade-stands/

A lemonade stand was really the very first business I ever had. In fact, this is the first introduction many kids have to running a business. [Read more…]

What I Would Tell a Young Up and Coming Entrepreneur

Lately I’ve been giving some advice to a young up and coming entrepreneur.  She doesn’t yet know that she’s an entrepreneur. But I know the traits when I see them. Fearless, determined, not afraid of hard work, not afraid of doing any kind of work, and focused.

If you’re still a kid I’m assuming you live at home with parents or someone that pays all of your bills. Except for school you’ll have plenty of time on your hands. And plenty of energy. Take advantage of it now. You’re going to need it. Entrepreneurs work very long hours. Unless you’re lucky enough to stumble on a great idea that makes you a fortune quickly, (don’t count on it) you’re going to have to work for years before your business takes off in a big way. Ask any successful business owner how long it took before they got their first vacation or day off.

entrepreneur

entrepreneur

When I was 16 I opted for a half day of school and then went straight to work in the afternoon. When that shift was finished I went to the mall and worked another job. I worked another part-time job selling Avon on the weekends. And I still made pretty decent grades.

I never cared that much about school at the time because I think deep down I always knew what I wanted to do. And there wasn’t anything I could learn in school that would prepare me to be an entrepreneur. Before you think I’m trashing education, I’m not. I believe you should learn every day of your life. I just don’t think college is for everyone. Especially an entrepreneur. If your career path is doctor, lawyer, scientist or engineer that’s a different story.

Remember the up and coming entrepreneur I was telling you about? She has over $100,000 in student loans to pay off and she’s working a minimum wage job that isn’t even close to what she got a degree in. I live next to a large college and I hear that same story all the time. If she had put $100,000 into a business she would be making a lot more than minimum wage by now. And wouldn’t be paying off debt. [Read more…]