The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

Even If You’re An Employee, You’re A Business Owner …
September 13, 2016, 6:15 am
Filed under: A Bit Of Inspiration, Attitude & Aptitude, Interviews, olympics

So I’ve written before about the value in starting your own business … and I still wholeheartedly stand by that.

However I recently read an interview with the actor Michael Keaton, that made me re-think a bit about what ‘starting your own business’ really means.

I love how he connects choosing a role with running his business.

It’s so obvious, but I never thought of it that way before.

But this is exactly how everyone should look at what they do … even if you are an employee of someone else.

What are you choosing to do?

What are you choosing to accept?

What are the standards you will work to and will expect from others?

Sure, some of these things are easier to control when you literally run ‘your own business’ … but if we acknowledge that our careers are ultimately in our own hands, then looking at what we do through the lens of it being ‘our own business’, may make us sharper on what we do and what we are willing to do. Or – as is sometimes even more important – what we won’t.


23 Comments so far
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If I’m a business owner, my decisions mean I could have run enron.

Comment by Billy Whizz

But taking advice from Keaton through you is even worse.

Comment by Billy Whizz

What’s a career?

Comment by John

Aren’t you a career comment writer?

Comment by DH

Career, verb: “To move swiftly in an uncontrolled manner or direction”. As in, “career from one disaster to the next”.

Comment by Ian Gee

I think John will prefer that definition.

Comment by Rob

doddsy is that definition.

Comment by andy@cynic

The theory works because if people are a small business, then companies are the conglomerate trying to put you out of business.

Comment by DH

Not companies. Managers. Screwed that up.

Comment by DH

A career comment writer wouldn’t have done that.

Comment by John

You’ve just proved my point.

Comment by DH

I doubt that very much.

Comment by John

So close and yet so far.
Hope the weekend wasn’t too tough Dave.

Comment by Rob

Interesting perspective. But in such a competitive market, I wonder if people only have that power once they have established their credibility. I can’t imagine a junior getting away with dictating what they will or won’t work on. Well, you might have given it a good go Robert, but I’m talking normal people.

Comment by George


Comment by Pete

Fair point … but I would say the best example of it is Baz. Sure, it was from another time, but in terms of ‘managing his career’ [even if he was doing it because he was a cheeky and nosy bastard], he’s better than Michael Keaton could ever be. Probably earns more than him too.

Comment by Rob

without me he would be fucking nothing. and what have i got out of it? a fucking pair of shitty earphones when i lost mine at his house 5 fucking years ago. prick.

Comment by andy@cynic

What a great way to look at your career. I think the actor analogy is particularly good because it encourages you to round yourself out rather than focus on one type of role, which may be good in the short-term but could also make you redundant down the line.

Comment by Pete

That’s a great perspective too. Though diversity in the acting industry is far more preferable than in pretty much every other industry.

Comment by Rob

why the fuck would i take advice from someone who was in jack fucking frost?

Comment by andy@cynic

To be fair, he’s been in less shit than most Hollywood A-listers.

Comment by Rob

I know you are paraphrasing the viewpoint of someone else, but this is fantastic advice. Even for someone heading towards the end of their career. You have been writing some excellent posts of late Robert. I hope it continues.

Comment by Lee Hill

[…] shouldn’t as I’ve written about this a ton of times [like here and here for example] but when you look at how we – in the communication industry – handle […]

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