How do we become entrepreneurs? It usually starts with unemployment.
You see, our work life experience typically begins with a job after graduating from college. We learn from every boss; even the ones we disagree with (I hope)!
As an entrepreneur at heart, your observations combined with your ambition might cause you to say words that separate you from a paycheck. For me (William), it was when I challenged my last employer’s board by not only stating, but proving they hired the wrong COO. Shortly thereafter, they very politely told me that the company was going in a different direction that did not include me. (Ironically, six years later, all 600 people were excluded from the board’s plan.)
After a few months of feeling liberated by the freedom of not having to schedule days off, playing golf whenever I wanted, and doing laundry in the afternoon, I came to the heart wrenching conclusion that I was part of this group called the unemployed.
My wife and I are serial entrepreneurs; we know it, we get it. We never stop talking about what’s next. While on a vacation, we wrote the business plan that would evolve into Vircity.
We had no experience in opening a retail establishment. What we were good at was solving problems and delivering great service – we had an idea and went for it – moving from unemployed to self-employed.
A few years later, the business is growing and we found ourselves quickly becoming employers. We could no longer do all the work ourselves. The problem with being an overachiever is when you realize that not everyone is and the employed are motivated by multiple things, not always your best interest.
The game changer is when you find that right person. You know, the one you know has your back. The one who cares; the one who respects what you created and someone who you trust to not only watch your entrepreneurial baby but also starts taking it to the next level.
You have succeeded as an employer when you do not need to look over their shoulder and make sure it is done YOUR way. To that end I raise my glass to Katelynne.
Katelynne runs Vircity so well that Janine and I are able to have other babies (teaching at Notre Dame Maryland University, growing Power Play Energy Gum, purchasing 720 S. Montford Avenue, and building McQuade Consulting).
For that reason, we are unemployed again. We have entrusted our entrepreneurial venture in the hands of our Vircity team. As silly as it is; your goal should be unemployment. Do not be employed by anyone; chart your own course, take a day off, hire great people, and watch them help take it to the next level. We all want to be great.
Letting someone else be great and watching them grow is rewarding.