In October 2005 I received a degree in International Economics, and straight out of the university I went to work for a large multinational company. It is was the most obvious path for me to follow; my parents encouraged me to do so, and my friends were doing it also. After one year, however, I was not so sure that this was the right choice for me. The more I thought about it, the more I wanted to take a shot and work on personal projects.
Late in 2006 I finally decided to run after my dreams. I quit my job, moved from Italy back to Brazil, and started to work full time with my blogs and other entrepreneurial projects, most of them related to the Internet. Below you will find 7 reasons that motivated me to take this decision. I had already written about those factors on another blog, but I decided to publish it on Daily Blog Tips as well because there are probably many bloggers on the same situation that I was, check it out:
1. If I will need to work my arse off, I’d rather do it for something that I own
I firmly believe that hard work is the foundation of success. Even if you consider supposed geniuses like great musicians or writers, history shows that behind each and every one of them there was an incredible amount of hard work. There is no easy way out and there are no shortcuts. So, if that is the case, it is clear that I will need to work damn hard no matter what I choose to do in life. Why not work that hard for my own self then?
2. Should you hit the jackpot with an idea, its your company that will collect most of the profits
Most people think that working for an organization is less risky than having your own business. The reasoning is right to a certain extent. After all, a standard job offers a secure pay check at the end of the month. This means that your income has a lower boundary, it will not go below a certain level no matter what. The problem, however, is that this security comes at the expense of limited earning potential. This means that your income will also have an upper boundary. It will not go above a certain level no matter what. Should you come up with a brilliant idea that generate millions for your company, it is unlikely that you will share the profits.
3. Companies pay you for your time, not for the value you create
I confess I have never understood the logic behind hourly wages. People’s salary should be based on the value they bring to the company on not on the number of hours they work weekly or monthly. Some organizations offer performance based retributions, that is a beginning but it is not enough. Think about a book. You are willing to pay a certain price for that book because you will get some value out of it right? Now, it does not matter if the writer took 10, 5 or 2 years to write the book. The price you are willing to pay is still the same and proportional to the value the book has to you.
4. Hierarchy and politics? No Thanks
Large organizations tend to be hierarchical and there is nothing you can do about it. People are classified according to their rank or seniority rather than by the quality of their ideas or by their drive. Sometime ago I was trying to implement the first internal blog for my division. The first thing I did was to call directly the HQ guy who was responsible for the communications platform, and he assured me that it would take no longer than 1 week to set the blog up. Guess what, after a couple of days I received a call from the Communications manager from our division, she wanted to “explain to me the rules of the game”(!). Basically she told me that all the communications related requests needed to pass through her no matter what, and she would therefore take charge of the blog set up. Two months after that call my division was still waiting for the blog.
5. I want to work on my own terms
Some time ago, more specifically under the industrial age, it probably made sense to get people grouped together in a single location, for a specific time span, all wearing a standard uniform. Do the same rules apply to the information age, though? I do not think so. If someday my company will grow so that I will need to hire people all I will tell them is: “Look, I don’t care if you work at 4 pm or in the middle of the night, at home or in the office, and if you do come to the office I don’t care if you wear shorts and sandals just like I don’t care if you listen to music while you work, do as you please as long as you get the job done!”.
6. Even if you screw it up for 10 years you will still learn a lot more
Many people told me to wait a couple of years more before starting my company. They said that I still lacked the experience. Well, maybe they are right and I do lack the experience. So what? Even if I get every thing wrong for the first 10 years I will probably learn a lot more than if I had stayed inside a large corporation. When you go alone you need to take all the decisions, solve all the problems and bear all the responsibility.
7. Are you doing what you love?
Passion is difficult to fake, you are either doing what you love or you are not, there is no in-between. Suppose you just won the lottery and money is not a problem anymore. What kind of work would you still be willing to do even for free? Personally I would write articles to share my ideas and would pursue some entrepreneurial projects. The question then becomes: “Do I really need to win the lottery to start doing that?”. Hell no! Once you realize that, it becomes much easier to drop everything else and start working on things that you really love.