Everything isn’t for everybody. We are in a time where social media appearances don’t match reality. People are more concerned with flexing for the gram than really putting in the work to be successful in real life. Smoking mirrors aside, there is something to be said for all of those “entrepreneurs” and “business owners” who brag about not having a boss and being the boss. I myself own my own public relations agency… BUT let me tell you, it is not easy at all!
Being your own boss comes with late nights, early mornings, not knowing where your next check is going to come from and host of other anxiety causing situations. (the struggle is real). Most people jump from idea to idea, project to project, never developing a business plan or doing any research on how to become a successful business owner. Growing pains are apart of the process. Never forget that. BUT why inflict stress on yourself when you don’t have to.
But back to the everything isn’t for everybody part. Not everyone is meant to be an entrepreneur. Having a corporate job is nothing to be ashamed of. If you are at a place where you feel fulfilled and believe you are growing as a professional, that is so much better than struggling to pay your bills and being stressed everyday just to say you’re a “boss”.
Let me run through some reasons why you should stick it out at your job instead of quitting to chase your dreams. (You can totally do both btw).
Working in corporate can prepare for your having your own business.
It is so much easier to learn about how running a business works from the inside instead of having to figure it all out the hard way. You might even find a profitable idea by working there. Owning your own business has so many layers and you can learn how you would want to run your company (or how you would not) by watching the way your company works. Pay attention to how they handle HR matters, compensation, training opportunities, the culture at your job, how higher level executives treat the junior staff and even how to manage your time. (that last one is MAJOR when you don’t have anyone to check you on your deadlines).
You can grow your professional network.
You are only as good as your network and your referrals. Each person in your professional network could be a potential client or could refer you to a potential client. You want to put your best foot forward while you are working at your job because old coworkers and employers will be the source that you pull from when looking for investors, clients and mentors.
You can learn at your employer’s expense.
Advanced Degrees and Certifications can be super expensive. Why tack on the extra cost of paying for that while you also are paying to make your website, logo, trademark, business cards and all of the other parts of starting your business when you can do it on their dime? Take advantage of corporate education incentive programs. You gain the skills you need to be a better business owner and they get a more educated employee. Everyone wins.
You can change the face of corporations. (Think diversity)
We all know that a lot of the corporations we work for could use a more diverse voice when it comes to the higher-level executives (think Pepsi, Shea Moisture). One of the ways that you can directly impact that is by working your way up the corporate ladder by becoming an asset to your company. While growing at the company you not only build your skill set, but you are also able to train the junior staff under you and build a team of smart, diverse voices.
So, the next time one of your friends asks you, “When are you going to quit your job?” You can simply answer, “When I have gained all I can from the company.” Corporations give you the flexibility to wear multiple hats within a single role. Don’t be in such a rush to be a “boss” that you miss the opportunity to be the Senior Vice President.