A lot of people prefer working at a job getting paid by the hour. I would go as far as to say that most people prefer working at a job instead of working for themselves.
A Pew Research Center report found that self-employed Americans and the people working for them together accounted for 30% of the nation’s workforce, or 44 million jobs in total in 2014.
102.4 million were working for someone else in 2014. Whether they prefer working at a job or not, most Americans’ primary source of income comes from a regular job.
I do have to admit that there are a lot of great benefits to a typical 9–5 job. Steady income, bounces, retirement plans, it can be easier or less stressful, and many other great advantages.
But the benefits when self-employed are endless. You are now in control of what you receive and how much. You have more choices and control when working for yourself.
Yes, that may involve more risk or more work but I think it is completely worth it.
I prefer the pros and cons of working for myself rather than working for hours.
Here are three main reasons why I think working for hours is the worst way to get paid.
The first and probably most obvious is you can’t scale it.
You only have so many hours within a week. There is already a predetermined number that you can physically achieve. Even when you include overtime you are still capped.
Overtime though — while it can be great — isn’t guaranteed. There may be a lot of competition for overtime, it may not be worth it or in some cases, your employer may not even offer it.
You are not only financially limited — but also in terms of personal growth.
When working at a 9 to 5 job, typically you’re doing the same actions over and over again. These routines are to better the company, to make them more profitable — not yourself.
Once you have mastered your position, once you get comfortable with what you’re doing — there is less motivation to grow personally.
You are trading your time for money.
It doesn’t matter how efficient you are or how well you do something. Your pay is determined by how long it took you to complete it or how long you were there. (Obviously, if you kept turning in bad work or were caught milking the clock you might not be there much longer.)
In fact, if you are really efficient at your job and find yourself with extra time. Instead of getting extra pay, you’ll get extra work for the same pay.
That is one thing that really annoys me. I like to look for the fastest way to accomplish something and if I do it well in less time — I would at least want the same pay and then leverage my remaining time to increase what wasn’t originally there.
I like to work smarter not longer.
(See what I did there. Lol, I thought it was funny. Anyways…)
I would recommend reading The 4-Hour Work Week (Affiliate Link) if you haven’t already. He talks about efficiency more in-depth not only for entrepreneurship but also for a typical 9–5 job.
Photo by insung yoon on Unsplash
Why would you try so hard to achieve a goal when you are getting paid the same if you were to do a decent job.
If you’re trying to outperform your coworkers though or run up the corporate ladder. Then yes, you will want to do the best job.
With any job, you obviously have to actually work but with a 9–5 or working for hours, you have to work the time you were scheduled for. You can’t just get up and leave — that is if you still want to work there.
When you are working for yourself, you have a bit more flexibility. Not like a lot more but definitely more. You get to work around your schedule, you get to work around your life.
Not only do you have less control over your time but also who you work with, the atmosphere you are in, and the environment that surrounds you.
“Life is a reflection of what you think. If your thoughts are negative, the world you see will be the same.”
Even with these — what I call — disadvantages. To someone else, they may look at them as advantages. Find out what you value, what your goals are.
Starting out as an entrepreneur is not by any means easy. But personally I think there is a lot more enjoyment out of working for myself, making the important decision, having that control, even having that responsibility is what it’s all about.
No matter what job you have there will always be stress. There will always be annoying people and there will always be a challenge.
But I want the work that I do now to not only pay off now but also in the future. You don’t get that when you trade hours for dollars.