There are two different types of people in business for themselves – the self-employed, and the entrepreneur. Today, I’m going to take some time to look at the self-employed. Which category do you fall in? Are you merely self-employed, or do you consider yourself to be an entrepreneur?
The self-employed are often those who have a product, talent or skill and have people willing to pay them for that product or service. They many times hang out their own shingle rather than work for someone else, and join the ranks of small business owners. These people are usually quite talented, and perfectly qualified to work for someone else, but choose to go their own way.
Some traits among the successful self-employed compiled on Helium shows that self-employed people are more likely to not let failure bring them down; we know that a successful business means trial and error, so we wake up to try another day. The self-employed also tend to be more extroverted and friendly toward people, a necessary element of success. And last but not least, successful self-employed business owners view obstacles as challenges to overcome instead of walls that can’t be climbed. To be successful, a self-employed person must be willing to face challenges when others take the “easy road.”
I have made a living for a number of years among the ranks of the self-employed, both as a journalist, and later as a marketing copywriter, account manager, and marketing consultant. I have people pay me for an hour or block of my time, and I in turn give them the materials or consultation needed. They save by not having to create a position in-house, and I continue to “work for myself.”
I am joined in the ranks of the self-employed by professionals from all walks of life – graphic designers, web designers, social media strategists, massage therapists, yoga instructors, home based businesses, coaches, and other service professionals.
There is a great thrill in being among the ranks of the self-employed, but there is also a tremendous downside. The stress of filling the next billable hour or selling the next product can be nerve-wracking; the drive to take the work when it comes, can often equal LONG hours – nights and weekends included. Not to mention the fact that we can’t take too much time off because without continuing to actively work our businesses, there is no business OR income.
If you are among the ranks of the self employed, what are your thoughts. Is it worth it? Or does it feel like a j-o-b? And tell me this, how do you balance the time on and off work?
Stay tuned, because tomorrow, we will look at the entrepreneur and see how they have managed to take self-employment one step further.