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Monthly Archives:July 2016

Employee vs Entrepreneur

When did being an employee become so risky?

We have all heard or had nightmares about starting businesses. We are afraid we will never make money, afraid we won’t find enough customers, and afraid we don’t live in the right location for optimal growth for our business.

There are all these risks and many more, too.

There is a well-kept secret that needs to become well known.

Realistically many of us who have been laid off from decent jobs may never find another one.

And age discrimination is rampant and no one moves to fix the problem.

No former employee or worker, regardless of education and training, is likely to find a remotely similar job in their lifetime. Walmart, here we come. $11.00 an hour is better than nothing.

And if workers, regardless of education are approaching 40, the odds get WAY worse. It’s the new 50. You are officially an old poop who is incapable of learning something new so you deserve to be kicked to the curb.

So you start a job search anyway. You watch your savings, 401K and other assets slowly (or quickly) dwindle away or do something radical.

Many of us really have no other viable option except to start some sort of business. It’s really hard to do if you don’t have much money, but the truth that government types don’t wish to acknowledge is that those of us who lose a job, most any job, are unlikely to find another comparable job…ever.

It is bad news.

Or it could be good news that could be life altering.

I felt secure because I had great education, just the kind companies say they want…accounting major, math minor, stellar analytical skills. Wrong.

As a family we experienced this. It left us panic stricken and desperate, just as it would anyone else. We had people depending on us, but the old (and dishonest and abusive) employer had a buddy that got one job and another wanted to improve their stock price through layoffs of personnel and also didn’t want to have to fund my retirement, though it was years away.

Nothing personal. It’s to benefit stockholders, you know.

It’s especially galling because doing great things for our employers did not make ANY difference. Imagine getting a stellar performance review and then a pink slip. It happens all the time and to lots of people. It’s not unusual at all.

And why would anyone believe they mattered to their employers.

It MADE me…forced us…to see what was real.

Being an employee is a VERY RISKY thing.

It was a vivid lesson in our perception of what reality is.

It forced us to see self-employment as the much better option.

Learning to face the reality that we had been living in a dream world that our jobs were in any way secure was a wakeup call that freed us from that misty, beautiful dream world and washed us in a cold shower of reality.

A former boss said something that has stuck in my mind forever.

About our mutual employer he said, with no hint of sarcasm, “On payday we’re even.”

But what if you are in debt up to your neck?

If you get fired or laid off, you are also bankrupt within the too low limits of your savings…if you have any.

So we stopped with working for someone else and started some businesses.

We ruthlessly dumped our big suburban house, found a cheaper one somewhere else and started businesses that went across the spectrum from retail, to writing romances, to brokering loans, to factoring, finance and investments and others.

Is it easy?


Would we go back to working for someone else?


It’s a big win that we live in a ski resort year round and we are enjoying a comfortable life in spite of the odds. Our home is cozy, if not large. We will never entrust our future well-being to an employer again. We passionately avoid debt.

It’s our personal wish to see a time when big companies will have to struggle to find employees that would willingly work for them, that they would be considered as risky as they really are.

It might FINALLY make that old chestnut true that, “Our employees are our greatest asset.”

Yeah? We’ll take it under advisement and continue to live realistically as entrepreneurs.