Most people spend their whole lives working for others. Naturally, they develop an employee mentality. They show up to work every day, and they expect the salary to show up on their account at the end of the month.
When you have an employee mentality, you might fail to realize that your salary is the direct result of the value you created through your work. It is not a reward, it’s compensation for a job well done. It is a way to express the value you brought to the world, or to someone in specific.
Once you internalize this idea, you realize that you don’t need a job. You don’t need a middleman. You don’t need a company to work for. You don’t need a boss. You only need to generate value, and the money will follow.
I know, it is easier said than done. But it is also how every entrepreneur starts any successful business.
If you want to know how you can generate value, start with these questions:
1. What am I good at?
2. Is there any problem I can solve for someone using my skills?
3. How could I go about solving that problem?
4. Would everybody involved benefit from my work?
This Is the Story of How I Did It
It was the beginning of 2015. I had quit my job of 4 years a few months before. I wanted time to reevaluate my career and create a project of mine that I cared about.
I didn’t know what exactly, but I knew I did not want another job. I wanted the freedom to create. I wanted something of my own. I wanted something entrepreneurial.
I had many bad ideas. I got a bit desperate trying to find a path to follow. After all, I was only 26 and had no experience creating anything on my own. But I had seen my parents doing it their whole lives. I knew there were many more possibilities, other than finding a job at some company. I knew I could create my own job.
For the previous 4 years of my life, I had been a journalist working for a company in a Portuguese community abroad. I met many people. I established relationships. I knew this audience extremely well.
In that community, there was an association composed of successful businessmen who gathered every month to socialize, to celebrate their Portuguese roots, and to help people in need.
The more people they would gather in their association, the more people in need they would be able to help. But the association was not so well known.
They did not have a communication plan. In fact, they were not doing almost any sort of communication.
There it was, finally… my problem to solve.
I came up with this idea: a magazine containing articles about the association, supported by ad revenue, sourced at the companies owned by the same businessmen who were part of the association.
It took off.
A few months later, we published the first issue. It lasted for five years, until coronavirus stroke. But it was definitely a successful project.
The magazine was distributed for free. The association never made money from it, but it served all the purposes it was meant to serve, as it served everybody involved.
The association: it got exposure, it grew in number of members and in reputation, and it established itself as the most prominent association of the network it was part of. All this by communicating rightly about its activities.
The businessmen/members of the association: they fulfilled their inner will to help others in need, by contributing to a project that was supporting an association that helps others. On the other hand, they had their companies advertised to a wide audience, generating sales from it.
Me: I got the freedom of creating my own project and got money for the value I brought to the world.
If you want to create your own job, let go of your employee mentality. Then, you will be on the right track. Now, stop reading this and start thinking about those questions I mentioned above. No, really, that’s all for today. See you on the other side.
This article is for informational purposes only, and it should not be considered Financial or Legal Advice. Not all information will be accurate. Consult a financial professional before making any major financial decisions.