cash for you to live on. • Stress . As a business owner, you are the business. There’s a bewildering array of things to worry about—competition, employees, bills, equipment breakdowns, customer problems. As the owner, you’re also responsible for the well-being of your employees. • Time commitment . People often start businesses so that they’ll have more time to spend with their families. Unfortunately, running a business is extremely time-consuming. In theory, you have the freedom to take time off, but in reality, you may not be able to get away. In fact, you’ll probably have less free time than you’d have working for someone else. For many entrepreneurs and small business owners, a forty-hour workweek is a myth; see Figure 5.7, “The Entrepreneur’s Workweek” . Vacations will be difficult to take and will often be interrupted. In recent years, the difficulty of getting away from the job has been compounded by cell phones, WiFi laptops, and personal digital assistants (PDAs), and many small business owners have come to regret that they’re always reachable. • Undesirable duties . When you start up, you’ll undoubtedly be responsible for either doing or overseeing just about everything that needs to be done. You can get bogged down in detail work that you don’t enjoy. As a business owner, you’ll probably have to perform some unpleasant tasks, like firing people. In spite of these and other disadvantages, most small business owners are pleased with their decision to start a business. A survey conducted by the Wall Street Journal and Cicco and Associates indicates that small business owners and top-level corporate
executives agree overwhelmingly that small business owners have a more satisfying business experience. Interestingly, the researchers had fully expected to find that small business owners were happy with their choices; they were, however, surprised at the number of corporate executives who believed that the grass was greener in the world of small business ownership. [ 137 ] Figure 5.7. The Entrepreneur’s Workweek Key Takeaways • There are several advantages that, generally speaking, come with success in business ownership: 1. Independence . As a business owner, you’re your own boss. 2. Lifestyle . Because you’re in charge, you decide when and where you want to work. 3. Financial rewards . In spite of high financial risk, running your own business gives you a chance to make more money than if you were employed by someone else. 4. Learning opportunities . As a business owner, you’ll be involved in all aspects of your business. 5. Creative freedom and personal satisfaction . As a business owner, you’ll be able to work in a field that you really enjoy, and you’ll gain personal satisfaction from watching your business succeed.
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- Business, Entrepreneurship, U.S. Small Business Administration