There will always be times when I long for being an employee again. Just like driving an automatic or playing a game on “Beginner”, I wish I could remove some of the difficulties associated with running a business.
When I was an employee, I had a few basic expectations.
- consistent work schedule (maybe not 9-5, but pretty close)
- consistent pay schedule (underpaid bi-weekly)
- holidays/holiday pay (no, really, Google it…people get these)
- limited focus (I could only mess up one small department)
- safety net (the buck didn’t always stop here)
My work schedule now is erratic at best. Sometimes it’s 9-5, sometimes it’s 5-9, and then there are those days when I try to figure out if I remembered to eat. Payday is somewhere between always and never. Technically, as a sole proprietor, I get paid with every client payment. However, we all know that’s not exactly true. I was never one to take holidays, but that 4-6% bonus was a nice feature when I needed it.
The big ones are the last 2. They can be summed up like this:
Everything is your job, and everything is your fault.
It was nice being able to focus on one task. Then, if sales were down and times were tough, it was still someone else’s job to make sure people got paid and the doors stayed open.
For all the nostalgia, I wouldn’t go back. I remember being an employee, and I remember hating it. Being a manager was even worse. I had all the downsides, a marginal increase in pay, and let’s not forget…everything WAS my job, and everything WAS my fault.
Now, if I want to take Tuesday off and spend it with my family, I usually can. My paycheque is only limited by my own success. Nobody else controls when I get a raise. If I want to spend the entire day tweaking a Wordpress plugin or helping one client save $100/month on their office expenses, nobody will drag me into their office to get mad.
It can be a tough life, but it’s not one I would want to give up.
What about you?
Can you think of a good reason to go back to being an employee? Have you ever considered doing it? If so, what stopped you?