Thursday, December 30, 2010

Do what others will not do for a short period of time in order to do what you want to do for the rest of your life.

I've been an entrepreneur all of my life. I say that not because I have owned businesses or came from a rich family. Far from it actually. I say it because ever since I sold candy bars in the second grade and couldn't keep the money, I was determined to find out how to make my own money. As I got older I realized making money was just a game with no instructions or set rules. There are consequences for breaking the law but there is nothing stopping you from making money. In my family there are some of the hardest working people I know to this day. They are up at dawn or some at night, who make it  to work on time every day, week in and week out. The blue collar, middle class working folks that make our world go 'round. When they would hear of the next deal, or the next opportunity, or the next best plan that I was working on they did what all good families do, they told me to get a job!

"Hey, the Post Office is hiring..."
"Did you look in the Wednesday classifieds..."
"You have security experience, join the police department..."

Success was based on a stable income and benefits. The amount of your income was a bonus. As long as you have a steady job with benefits you were a success story. Today that philosophy has a cautionary tail due to the amount of lay offs and cut backs. Working my way up the corporate ladder I began to get knocked off and sometimes even thrown off. All the while, I would always remember that feeling I had when I gave my hard earned candy bar money to Sister Rita Mary. I was playing the money game by the wrong set of rules and I was loosing. It was not to say that my family was wrong, it was just that the instructions did not work for me and I needed to play by another set of rules.

I have been called a jack of all trades because of the many different industries I have worked in and the most success I have ever had was when I said, "This is what I can do to help." rather than, "What do you want me to do?".  Once I began to list the things I could do to help others, I began to be seen as a valued commodity not only in the work place but also to myself. No longer was it necessary for me to wait for the Wednesday classifies. I was creating my own position. I would find a business that needed my skills and implement a position to handle those issues. Mostly small businesses and not for a whole lot of money but it was always enough and I didn't need to fight up any stupid ladder. Over the years I have been able to learn from business professionals as I help them solve their problems. As my skills improved so did my ability to offer more services and the more valuable I became in my own work place.

My lesson of life is, that in order to learn you must be willing to teach and in order to live you must be willing to learn. Allow this new year to open the doors to new possibilities and adventures. 2011 promises to be a year of opportunity so when you hear the door knock... answer it.

Happy New Year!

2 comments:

  1. well said!! thanks for sharing this chunk of knowledge, keeps me goin'!!

    ReplyDelete