You're an Entrepreneur, Act Like It

After recently reading an excellent piece on working for free by Jeffrey Tucker of the Mises Institute, my mind was caught up on the idea that regardless of whether or not we own a "business", we are all entrepreneurs. Let me explain.

Putting owned capital to work to produce something that someone else values is the essence of entrepreneurship, as I understand it. I own my mind and my body. I can use both to make myself a profit. If we consider our faculties as capital, and our employment of them as production, then it's easy to see why I would call everyone an entrepreneur. So what?

Act like it! Calculate your inputs, tally your outputs, maximize your profits and minimize your losses. Whether or not you deal with consumers, you still deal with customers. Your employer is your customer. You work for him just as he works for consumers. Improving your customer services skills means improving whatever it is that makes your employer, your customer, happy.

Once you begin thinking like an entrepreneur, you'll understand what it takes to improve your lot in life. Are there customers out their looking for someone to serve them? Absolutely. Even during a recession there're plenty of jobs. Mr. Tucker's article is a must read. If you can't find anyone to buy your services, then give them away. Build your reputation, your resume, and your stack of letters of recommendation. Make temporal considerations. Sure you'll have to mooch off of mom and dad while you work for free, but consider it a business decision. Sacrifice now to benefit in the future.

It's easy to overlook this very important principle. You aren't an employee. You're a business owner. You're in control of your capital and can put it to whatever use you believe will net you the highest profit. Teach your kids this important principle, and help them to be successful, too. Happy entrepreneuring!