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Mike Hunder: Are You Thinking of a Career in Paid Employment or Entrepreneurship?

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In recent weeks, there has been a growing debate between regular employment and entrepreneurship, as people struggle to keep up with the rising transportation costs to their workplaces, following the removal of fuel subsidies by the government. Many are at crossroads, weighing the pros and cons of paid employment and entrepreneurship. Here are a few things to consider when deciding which you want to go for:

Do you lean towards stability or adventure?

Irrespective of your career path, we all seek to manage our cash flow well. Working in regular employment provides stable monthly income, benefits and a relatively predictable work routine, and this allows for better management of your cash flow. This stability is particularly comforting if you have financial obligations or dependents to take care of, like kids going to school and aged parents needing care. On the other hand, entrepreneurship opens the door to a journey of adventure. It means taking on financial uncertainty, and the ability to navigate through challenges. Then again, it also offers the chance to follow your passion and build something remarkable.

Do you fancy clearly defined roles or creative freedom?

An amazing thing about entrepreneurship is the freedom to create and explore your ideas. Like a blank slate, you have the opportunity and freedom to shape your business according to your dreams. In contrast, regular jobs involve adhering to clearly defined roles and structures, which may limit your ability to express your creativity, make independent decisions and define your path. You can still find ways to showcase your creativity within your role but that depends on the flexibility of that role.

Do you typically uphold a work-life balance?

While we may all seek to make a difference through our work, some uphold work-life balance as an essential aspect of building a career. Paid employment often comes with fixed working hours, which can be beneficial if you seek to maintain a balance between your work and personal life. However, entrepreneurship, especially in the early stages, comes with longer working hours, making it difficult to separate the line between your work and personal life. Starting your own business also means you’re creating job opportunities for others too, and this is a direct avenue to make a significant impact on society.

Do you embrace specialised training or a diverse skills-set?

Both regular employment and entrepreneurship provide opportunities for learning and personal growth. Regular employment provides more access to formal training as well as opportunities for career advancement within the organisation. Hence, this can be beneficial, if you prefer a structured learning environment. As an entrepreneur, however, you get hands-on experience from wearing multiple hats and managing various aspects of running a business. You’ll self-develop yourself in marketing, finance, and operations, allowing you to develop a diverse skills-set and expand your knowledge in different areas. This can be valuable if you like to continuously challenge yourself, acquire new skills, and adapt to changing market trends.

Do you gravitate towards earning a living or making wealth?

We all need money, but what separates the entrepreneur from the regular employee is the inclination to see money in terms of long-term wealth rather than in monthly salaries. As an entrepreneur, you have the opportunity to generate substantial profits and build long-term wealth. Hence, your earning potential is not limited to a fixed salary. However, entrepreneurship comes with financial risks and uncertainties: it takes time to establish a sustainable and profitable business, and many startups fail.
Paid employment, on the other hand, provides a steady pay-cheque, but the potential for significant financial growth may be limited.

Therefore, choosing between paid employment and entrepreneurship is a tough decision to make. While paid employment provides stability, a defined career path and work-life balance, entrepreneurship offers the freedom to create, make an impact, and the potential for higher financial rewards. Both paths have their challenges and rewards. The key is to consider your passion, risk tolerance level, and goals when making your choice, and then take the path that aligns with your interests, strengths, aspirations and circumstances.




Feature Image by Greta Hoffman for Pexels

A foremost training consultant and public speaker based in Lagos. Erstwhile bank general manager [union bank of nigeria Plc and the then oceanic bank, now Ecobank, respectively], Mike continues to take out time to share his experiences to help others pursue their dreams. Reach him at Emails: [email protected] ; [email protected]

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