When Shark Tank judge otherwise known as “Mr. Wonderful” posted a not-so-subtle stance on employment versus entrepreneurship this week, it hit like a clap of thunder.
Calling a salary a “drug,” the investor who regularly puts his money where his mouth is in the form of funding entrepreneurial endeavors put an even finer point on his perspective. To him, employment is not just one of two equal options; it’s settling.
Let’s be clear: entrepreneurship isn’t for everyone. The risks alone aren’t everyone’s cup or tea, nor is the concept of waking up each morning without a clear assignment from an outside source. When you’re self-employed, next steps are entirely up to you. There’s no one else to go to and say, “well, I tried.” Instead, success is in your hands.
Yet for those who are made of entrepreneurial cloth, a full-time gig can indeed be a tempting reason to negate one’s notions of a self-directed life. Especially when your mom is nagging you to get health insurance.
For many, the nudge into entrepreneurship looks more like a shove.
Oprah Winfrey often discusses how being fired from the stable news anchor job was the launchpad she needed to start her own show. If she had never been let go, she recounts, she never would have quit. Her father even suggested that the regular paycheck she was receiving surely wouldn’t last.
Today’s economic uncertainty could be exactly what many would-be entrepreneurs needed to pursue their ultimate dreams, however lofty they may appear. As company after company announces 20% layoffs, chances are high that history books are being written behind the scenes. In the decades to come, we shouldn’t be surprised to learn that no shortage of entrepreneurial endeavors was birthed from opportune layoffs.