The things I love most about being my own boss:
1. I come and go as I please
Meaning, I have a flexible schedule where I can fit things in my week days that I would otherwise have to relegate to super-early in the morning, the end of the day or the weekend. Whether that's running an important errand; getting in some exercise or; meeting somebody who just happens to be in town for only the day!
In the end, the work has to be done and, being that I'm full aware of my business financial obligations, I'm not lacking incentive to ensure the work is done. However, I love having the freedom to choose when, where and how I do it.
2. I set my own agenda
I do work that: enables me to fulfil what I see as my purpose; satisfies my interests; is in line with my values and; involves people with whom I share mutual respect.
Sure, I've been in situations where financial pressure has meant that I've had to consider compromising one of these things. The moral of the story has almost always been – it's not worth it.
Indeed, doing what you love, and what's right for you, tends to make the most sense. For your productivity, for your sanity and ultimately, for your bank balance too.
3. I create something that is bigger than myself
Yes, we are serving people who commission our services and consume our products – we are making their lives easier and/or richer in some way. But more than that, I'm creating a livelihood for a bunch of amazing people who deserve to do work they love and develop their careers in an environment that challenges and nurtures them at the same time. That goes for Asilia as well as my network marketing business.
You can argue that, while employed, I was also contributing to the realisation of some greater goal. However, when there is little sense of ownership, and a feeling of being indispensable, it's hard to feel the same kind of dedication for the mission.
It might seem contradictory that I'm talking about a bigger picture, or a legacy, at the same time as insisting on the need for every individual to feel special and integral but, they are part and parcel somehow. Every chain as strong as its weakest link. Each individual recognised as such, and empowered, creates an invincible force!
Indeed no man is an island
And I do not live on one. In fact, I have an awesome team and I appreciate that my decisions impact on them. My business partner, Andrew, and I truly value the freedoms above and we appreciate how important they have been in our own lives. Thus we try to afford our team the same. In many ways, Asilia is our experiment in creating a new type of workplace. When we talk about "the best of both worlds," part of that has to do with the fact that our team are technically employees but, we expect them to be entrepreneurial and we treat them as such.
Why do you choose to be an entrepreneur? Why do you choose not to?
I look forward to reading your responses in the comments!
- Self, Love and Enterprise – written at the beginning of my Asilia journey
- The Best of Both Worlds – reflections upon the launch of Asilia's new site, earlier this year
- 5 Steps to Creative Independence – a guest post I wrote for African Digital Art
- Showcasing, Encouraging and Supporting Creative Entrepreneurship
- An Interview with Lulu – my colleague, Evans, interviews me as part of the Asilia team interview series
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