More than 15.9 million Filipinos call themselves Self-Employed and that usually means they own a business. Should you call yourself a Self-employed individual too?
In this article, we will find out by exposing 9 under-discussed realities of what it’s like to have an online business (from a real online business owner earning six figures per month).
You shouldn’t be a business owner if…
#1. You Like It (alot) when other people pay your taxes and your insurance
Fact: Business owners have zero income ceiling.
You can honestly make as much as you are willing to grow your business.
Equally important fact: you don’t get to keep every single peso that you make.
Necessary stuff like taxes, insurance and the permit fees are all part and packaged in running a legitimate, successful business.
The good news is, if you are wise enough about how you grow your business, you can create pricing structures and fees that take care of those costs. If you are a genius (or just plain lazy like me) you’ll also build in the cost of hiring someone smarter than you to handle the adult stuff (bookkeeping, insurance, taxes, etc.)
Either, you are responsible for all these “adult stuff”
#2. You are addicted to the internet and netflix
Do you think I’m joking? I am dead serious.
If you suffer from real internet addiction, no amount of self-discipline will help you get the work done — work that customers and clients paid you for.
To be clear, there is no other career path in the world that gives you a free lifestyle and the freedom to make serious money that owning a business does, but earning more while working less is achieved through proper time management.
If you can’t stop checking your Facebook app every 7 minutes, it’s going to be hard to make a living and run a business.
I typically get done in a day or at least 4x what an in-house employee accomplishes in that same day. This is one of the reasons why clients hire me and pay me well.
Perspective: The things that you tried to slip in between your work hours as an employee will be the exact same thing that will crush your chances of running a successful business.
The quick solution is to develop simple routines and practices… Again, if you are diagnosed with clinical internet addiction, you might need something more than that.
#3. You Hate Taking The blame (No Accountability)
The common case of “excusitis”
You prefer to blame others and you shy away from honest feedback. These are behaviors that will take your business on a highway to hell.
Making 30,000 net without lifting a finger (because you have a team to do it for you) is one of the best parts of having a business. However, to actually deserve that kind of trust from clients require a certain level of accountability and professionalism.
Business owners are directly responsible for everything that happens inside the business. That includes the results and satisfaction their company delivers to its clients and customers.
If you have a habit of running away from responsibility, if you miss deadlines, lie about missing them and refuse to accept constructive criticism…
Owning a business and the rewards that it brings is simply…not…for…you…
#4. You believe that you need to get paid first before others
Employees are paid to show up. Whether they do quality work or no effort at all, they will still get paid.
Agree or disagree: As an employee, there were days where you were just trying to go through the day and not do anything important.
Agree or disagree: you still have a job.
Agree or disagree: you are paid to show up.
For sure, even on those lazy days at work, you still believe that you need to get paid for that time spent in the office.
If you are a business owner, that is not the case.
To generate 30,000 a day, you need to give 30,000 worth of value to your marketplace and customers within the day. No shortcuts, no delays and no excuses.
If that is your moral approach to work, you will quickly develop a reputation of being an inconsistent, non-trustworthy and unworthy company.
I have seen too many aspiring business owners who see too much the financial and lifestyle possibilities of owning a business only to see them fall back and crawl back to their old employers because they could not maintain a habit of giving value in exchange for being paid.
#5. You hate learning new things
No matter what type of niche or industry you are in as a business owner…
If you are not willing to get better in your chosen field, you will not last very long in the business game.
I’m not saying go get a PhD or something (i personally think that would be a major waste of time and money)
I’m not saying go enroll yourself in a 300,000 personal mentorship program (yet).
I am suggesting something more simple but builds up in time: build and commit to a daily improvement regimen.
You may do these:
- For at least 1 hour, listen to a highly recommended audiobook related to your industry.
- Spend a few minutes every day looking out for masterpieces and successful outputs from masters in your industry (this cultivates inspiration and kickstarts your creativity)
- Make a habit of asking for feedback from clients and customers.
Super simple. That’s it!
These minute things are free to do. I do not push myself to become an industry leader overnight. It is a daily regimen that comprises micro-progresses that build up over time.
I’m in this for the long haul. Are you?
If you are not interested in becoming better, then business is not for you.
#6. You secure yourself first before others
The best business owners are those that have empathy — those that can adjust to the needs of their clients and customers within reasonable parameters.
But draw the line though. It’s one thing to be flexible and adjust. It’s another to constantly kiss a problematic client’s ass just to maintain the business relationship.
However, if you are unwilling to put your customers’ needs first before your own, your business will fail. Period.
Although we love drama in our movies and tv shows, that is not the case in real-life — especially in business. You might argue that there are some self-centered legends out there that totally debunk what I just said but…
Could you imagine working with someone like them and while maintaining a sane and peaceful lifestyle?
If your goal is to create a business that compliments your desired lifestyle — more time with kids, more time at home, more time stress-free — do not be a diva.
Be willing to develop a mindset of compassion towards your customers — they are basically the ones paying for your bills.
#7. You are allergic to the word “deadline”
This has a slight overlap with #3 but I think it’s still worth enumerating
Realtalk: Your clients will measure your worth by how well you meet deadlines.
Pro tip: To avoid missing deadlines, YOU set the timeline. As a business owner, you must take the lead and guide your clients and customers instead of allowing them to dictate when and how things get done.
Avoid unrealistic deadlines. If you give in and say yes to such deadlines, you will never impress them.
Another pro tip: Always underpromise then overdeliver (and the opposite is also true)
Deadlines are better met when the company (not the customer) sets it.
There is no faster way to lose customers’ trust than consistently missing deadlines.
Stop missing the deadline, bro.
#8. You need to have a guarantee before you commit to something
A bi-monthly salary of a guaranteed amount is not a reality for business owners. There will always be fluctuation. (I can relate! I am writing this blog during the spread of the COVID19 virus. Nobody expect it to happen so fast!)
But change does not always mean negative. Fluctuation also means it can increase. In fact, a successful business is a business that always grows. Meaning, it does not stay stagnant.
If you are the kind of person that does not function unless they know exactly what they are going to get in the next few months or year or even a week from now… business is not for you.
Customers and clients will change (come and go), your products and service will change and improve, you will be constantly growing in project size and in revenue.
This means you will be having better projects, bigger clients, bigger income and that it’s going to be totally different from what your life is right now.
If that scares you, something else should scare you even more… the classic lie: “consistent employment”
You could be laid off any moment (with no warning… no reason…)
To believe that this isn’t true is a delusion.
However, if you disagree, still believe that employment is the road to financial freedom or that you couldn’t function if you don’t see a guaranteed future then maybe business is not really for you.
#9. You hate the idea of getting paid above average
Yes, I said it! There is actually a special group of people who hate the idea of becoming rich or making more money than you need.
These people associate money with becoming evil. A demented connotation that demonizes wealth.
If you believe making 6-figures a month at the age of 23 years old is not how the world should work, business is not for you.
I make good money (way above average)
That is not arrogance, it’s simply a fact. I would be lying if I say: “I’m working so hard to make minimum wage”
I also give away money.
Again, not arrogance. Just stating facts.
Tithes and offerings to the church. Charity to causes I support like clean ocean, single-use plastic and clean water.
Not trying to pick up my own seat or pat myself in the back here. Honestly, I don’t even care what you think about what I do or about me.
At the end of the day, money is a tool.
If you are able to provide services or products to people and make good money out of it, you will be armed with a weapon that you can use for good.
Definitely not talking about sleazy scams trying to sell ideas and products the market does not really need. I am talking about building a business that truly helps others achieve their goals by leveraging whatever product or services that you are offering to them and getting paid what that offer is truly worth so you can live a life that you desire.
If you still believe that making A LOT of money is bad, business is not for you.
Being a business owner is not as glamorous as what “entrepreneurs” in Instagram show it to be.
You don’t magically get the rewards and benefits of your business the moment you decide to start.
More than the products, the skills and the passion, it requires mindset shifts, more skills and a well-thought-of plan of action. If you are willing to make those changes, to grow your business as you grow as an individual and to work hard UNTIL you make it, I truly believe that there is no better way to make a living on this planet than to own a business that helps others.
Most businesses fail because after all the planning, they forget one of the key components to a successful business and that is customers. Come join my free webinar where I teach you how you can attract customers, make them buy now and buy again using simple social media ads. Click here to learn more.