Why I don't want a job

(and 3 reasons why you don't want one, either)

You probably know the old joke that 'JOB' stands for 'Just Over Broke'; but 'broke' in this instance means more than just no money.

I think JOB might equally mean Joining Obnoxious Bosses or Jangle of Boredom or Jargon Over Brains or Jackasses-Only Business . . . I could keep going, but you probably get the point.

Here's the problems with a j-o-b, from my perspective.

The Illusion of Security

A lot of people are still operating in the 1950's illusion of success; i.e. get a good education, get a good job, work at it for 30 years or so, then retire and try to have some fun.The 'company' will look after you if you are a 'company man'.

Here's the truth: the company holds NO OBLIGATION TO YOU. They are obligated to their investors and shareholders; if dumping you will make the shareholders happy, it's hasta banana, baby!

2010 reality check: In these days of corporate 'rightsizing' and exporting jobs to third-world cheap-labour nations, the only security you have is what you can create for yourself. You create security by providing value. If you provide value to enough people, you won't have to worry about security; they will look after you.

The Lack of Control

Do you really want to spend 8 hours a day, 5 days a week, FOR MOST OF YOUR ADULT LIFE, working on things that other people think are important?

The last job I held was in 1994; I left it because I could no longer fool myself that I gave a rat's behind about what the company did, or my role in it. Helen Keller said “One can never consent to creep when one feels an impulse to soar “. And I was working with creeps (joke.)

Understand, I was very good at the job; I had received awards, and I had a career path that would take me very high if I committed to it. But I couldn't surrender the things I was interested in pursuing to make 'corporate' happy.

So I fired myself, and have never been happier. I've been 'just over broke' (even 'under') a couple times, but at least my time and my energies are committed to things I believe are important.

The Limited Leverage

You might be familiar with the 'Rich Dad/Poor Dad' books by Robert Kiyosaki; one of his most interesting creations is the CASHFLOW QUADRANT. In essence the Cashflow Quadrant demonstrates that employees have no way to leverage their efforts. Work an hour, get paid for an hour. Robert calls this earned income.

The only way to increase your earned income is increasing your hours of work. And, before you get paid, the company investors, shareholders, accounts receivables, and the taxman get their cut from the fruit of your labours. Earned income is the least-desirable form of income because there is no leverage.

Contrast this to a business owner or inventor or author. They don't work for income; they spend their time creating assets that will produce income for them.

What's the difference? If I spend an hour creating an asset that provides value to other people, I can get paid multiple times for that hour's work. If I write a book, and people agree it has value, I can sell that book many times; I can even receive income while I sleep. My income is not tied to the hours I work; that is leverage

So, what's the alternative to a JOB?

So, what's your alternative to a J-O-B?

The alternative: Find a way to provide value to a lot of people, and find a way to get paid for it. For most people, this means starting a business. I currently have 3 businesses; I expect each to provide me income in proportion to the value I deliver, and beyond the hours I invest in them.

I believe one of the best opportunities available to 'regular people' is starting an on-line business. There are very few opportunities where the start-up cost is so low, but the income potential is practically unlimited. And your success is directly tied to the value your online business provides. This means it is entirely up to you how far you go, and the success you can enjoy.

Here's another Helen Keller quote: “Life is either a great adventure or nothing”.

If you want to learn more about starting an online business that just might be your own great adventure, check out this set of tools that can get you there.

They are what I used to build a successful e-commerce website. You can read more about how we grew it here.

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