9-5 job is not bad; Everyone can't be self-employed

Emeh Joy

9-5 job is not bad; everyone is not meant to be a boss or self-employed. You can decide to be self-employed, but it is not okay to ridicule others who are not...

9-5 job is not bad; everyone can't be self-employed

9-5 job is not bad; everyone is not meant to be a boss or self-employed. You can decide to be self-employed, but it is not okay to ridicule others who are not... By 9-5 job, I mean full-time jobs that keep you up from 9 am till 5 pm.

I often hear people give this advice, “Leave your 9-5 job. Start your business, become your own CEO”. There is that misconception that people who work for or under others are not doing well for themselves. 9-5 job is viewed, especially in this part of the world as slavery.

Statements like that above make it seem like people doing 9-5 jobs are not doing well. But, is this true?

Let’s face it; it's not entirely true. We have to get used to the fact that while it sounds great to be called the owner of an establishment, it doesn’t mean you are better than someone else working for an organisation.

There are 9-5 workers that earn more than some “CEOs” and enjoying almost the same degree of freedom the so-called CEOs enjoy. It depends on factors like the working environment, the CEO, employee level and the industry.

The quest to “become my own boss” has pushed many into undue stress and pressure trying to fit in where they most likely do not belong.

Everyone’s success story cannot be the same.

Peoples story are not the same, and what works for one person might not work for another. You haven’t heard stories of people who set up a business, started well and after a while, it all came crashing down?

In contrast, some succeed through their own businesses; others also succeed, counting their millions and enjoying a flexible life while working for another person.

Going on social media to say people with 9-5 jobs should leave their jobs doesn't make sense. What if they function better as a team and don't mind helping others execute plans and ideas?

The advice would sound better if you asked people working in an unhealthy environment or jobs that are not working for them to quit.

People should stop pressuring others and making them feel they are not on the right path simply because they are not entrepreneurs or did not set up their own business. It's high time entrepreneurs stop acting like they are better.

People's success stories can never be the same. Some people have built legacies for themselves by setting up business empires. In contrast, some have made a name for themselves working their way up to top executive positions in top organisations.

One person owns a business and is happy; likewise, another works for an organisation and is happy. Both are successful and fulfiled, and that is what should matter most.

Not everyone is meant to be self-employed

One major reason people want to be their own boss is that they want to enjoy freedom, they don’t want someone giving them instructions on what to do, and they definitely don’t want to be accountable to another person.

Lately, the topic of '9-5 jobs' versus 'being your own boss' became a trend on social media, particularly on Twitter. A lady was attacked for tweeting that she wants a 9-5 job. She loves routine and structure and doesn't want to be her own boss.

But everyone cannot be a boss; everyone cannot be self-employed, and I wonder why she was attacked. If everyone turns to a boss who will be the employee?

One comment under the tweet said:

"You don't like choosing when to go to work? And taking vacations whenever you want? I don't think one can be a 9-5 person for so long".

Now, here is a comment to the tweet above by another user, "I have a 9-5 job, I choose when I want to go to the office, I choose when I want to go on vacation. My boss will always say he's not paying for office space, get the job done.

"if you like, stay in your house, just do my job. Find the right 9-5, and you'll chill".

I think this last comment is the bottom line. The issue shouldn't be about someone doing a 9-5 job but about finding the right 9-5 job.

Indeed some bosses would stress their employees and put undue pressure on them. In fact, some work environments are just too toxic that it can reduce someone's lifespan.

Sadly, this is the type of job many people find themselves in. Hence, the widespread quest to leave 9-5 jobs and establish a self-managed business.

Do you have what it takes to be a boss?

For those saying, "I don't want to work under somebody. I want to be my own boss". Have you ever stopped and asked if you have the "boss qualities"?

I am not even talking about the charisma but do you have what it takes to set up a business, manage and grow it?

Often, people make leadership and entrepreneurship sound easy. But it is not easy. It comes with a whole lot of stress, especially during the initial stage. It is both physically and mentally draining. Are you ready for the stress?

If you are not the type that takes the initiative, brings up innovative ideas and takes responsibility for things, you'd hardly make a good boss when you start up that business for yourself.

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If you can't push yourself to do things and always procrastinate things, your business is almost bound to fail. This is because as your own boss, nobody is going to push you to do the things you are meant to do.

Here are some things you should get ready for if you plan to be your own boss, particularly if it's not a one-person business.

  1. Sourcing the right workforce
  2. Setting up a team
  3. Gathering resources for your business projects
  4. Originating ideas
  5. Driving the execution of the ideas
  6. Co-ordinating the team
  7. Lots of projection and re-planning

So, don't go thinking it's a walk in the park. While no one will give you instructions on what to do; you have loads of responsibilities to take care of.

Do you know what makes it worse? You can't leave. Unlike your employees who might decide they don't want to work with you anymore, you can't just wake up one morning and say you are leaving the business because it is yours. Well, unless you want to close that source of income.

If you are not cut out for entrepreneurship, please don't listen to what people say. Do what works for you, so you don't go into it and get overwhelmed.

Qualities of a good leader

So we just talked about some of the responsibilities you have to shoulder as the leader or a business owner. But now, we would talk about the qualities of a 'good' leader.

We want to talk about leadership in 'action' not just as a 'position'. It's not enough to say, "I am the boss" when you are not a good boss.

If your business is to stand and grow, then surely you need to have good leadership qualities. You should be able to communicate clearly to your employees the vision, mission and goals of your business.

Explain to your employees what is expected of them. Set performance expectations and provide them with feedback. This way, you establish a good working relationship with them.

Every good boss ought to be supportive of the staff. No one would enjoy working with a difficult boss. It doesn't mean you allow yourself to get pushed around.

No, you still get to make the final decisions, but you should still be confident enough to show that part of you that is humane. Create a healthy working environment and make work seem like fun and not labour for employees.

A good boss makes her employees feel valued, and in return, her employees appreciate her. When good qualities like this are met, it makes room for personal, career and business growth. Everyone gets what they want.

In summary, if you are looking into shifting from your 9-5 to a self-owned business, here are some qualities you should adopt to set you apart from other bosses and to boost your business.

  • Have clear visions and goals and have ideas on how to execute them
  • Good communication skills
  • Be decisive
  • Be available to your employees.
  • Be supportive
  • Give credit to whom it is due.
  • Empower your staff and give room for self-development
  • Trustworthy and honest
  • Ability to motive others

With that said, here's a quick reminder that 9-5 jobs are not bad, and everyone is not meant to be a CEO. However, if you feel you will do better being your own boss, go for it.

The bottom line is you do not push people to do the same when they don't want that or can't handle it. You can decide to be self-employed but don't ridicule others who are not because all job roles matter.