Want to be an entrepreneur?
Expect to earn less.
Yep, that’s the reality.
All stats and historical data show that most entrepreneurs end up earning less in total personal compensation over a ten-year period than they would have as an employee for someone else.
Not trying to blow up the dreams of any aspiring future business owners out there, but it’s the truth. A small minority of entrepreneurs end up being rich. I know that’s the only ones you hear about in the news, but it’s not the majority.
Even now, when I look over the past 7 years running Recruiting Firm Riderflex, I’m estimating that I’ve given up somewhere between $700k and $1.0 million in compensation that I would have earned as an executive for others. That’s the path I was on and making regularly before starting Riderflex and paying myself about 30k over the first two years.
So that’s the bad news I guess.
What’s the good news?
I’m happier! Way happier since starting Riderflex. Even if it all ended someday, I’m grateful for the experience and wouldn’t trade it for anything.
The lifestyle, freedom, people, experience and satisfaction of building something from scratch has been more enjoyable and rewarding than I can possibly describe in this post. It’s better than having more money, living on airplanes and being miserable. I know now that when I’m 80 years old, I’ll have no regrets with regards to my career.
More compensation and bigger titles won’t bring you overall life happiness. I recommend chasing “experiences” vs. “dollars”. And yes, I realize more dollars allows for more extravagant experiences, but it’s not worth working 70 hours a week for 30 years.
Question. Who’s happier and has fewer regrets at 75?
The dude who at 40 years old took off on Fridays, went to all his kids activities during the week and never made more than 200k.
The guy who at 75 rides around on his yacht, but worked himself into the ground for 30 years. 70 hour weeks, was never home, got divorced, never spent time with his kids and still doesn’t have a relationship with his grandchildren.
There are lots of great things about owning a business and being an entrepreneur. But don’t do it for the money or because you think you’re going to be rich. Do it for the lifestyle and freedoms it brings to control your schedule, time with family and time on hobbies.