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Stop wasting time, let others do it!

By Aaron Colman
Posted Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Most people start a business because they enjoy the work... only to end up hating it later due to stress. An ounce of prevention here can make you rich.

How much time did you spend on work last week? This includes any full-time jobs you have, any part-time jobs, your website and any related activities. How much time did you spend just marketing?

If you're like most people, you probably spend 40 hours a week on your own business. We're told that hard work generates wealth... unfortunately that's not always true. It seems that the harder we work, the less our time is worth. There are literally thousands of things that need done... some of them seem like they require constant attention. Would you like to learn how to fix that once and for all?

Change your mind!

It's time to install a new attitude.

Most people, when they start their own business, do so coming from a full-time job. They get sick of their boss, so they decide that they want to be their own boss. Does that sound familiar to you?

But let's take a look at things for a minute. So you've started your own business. If you were to leave that business would it continue to make money without you? If you stopped marketing and designing for 6 months... would it keep making enough money for you to live comfortably? Honestly? If you're like most people then the answer is no.

I once worked with a middle-aged guy named Jim. He was a computer programmer turn game designer. He spent more than 40 hours a week designing his own games. Unfortunately stress caught up with him. He quickly realized... "I don't own a business, I own a job!"

... Ever been to a McDonald's? Do you think the owner of the McDonalds you visit ever flips burgers? Probably not. The truth of owning your business is staying OUT of the business. Think for a moment: How can I re-design my business so that it can function without me?

The easiest way is to design your business for duplication. Pretend like you plan on franchising thousands of them. Even if you're not planning on it design your business like you are. Remember however, the larger your business gets the less-competent your associates will be. Always design the system for the lowest-common denominator. Expect to only work with complete idiots and you'll never have to rely on others to do their job.

I think a great analogy is that of an ancient row- boat... the kind that the Egyptians used to use. As a slave tied to the oar your most immediate world is the slave master. These masters, often slaves themselves, would receive a small paycheck for their efforts. They had command over the slaves and could inflict whatever punishment they felt necessary. Some people could never see past becoming the slave master.

But that's just the beginning. Above them you had the 1st officer of the ship. Oftentimes the Captain would delegate personnel duties to a 2nd or 3rd in command. That way, if there was an uprising, the Captain could appear blameless to the crew and simply execute the 1st officer. Of course most slave masters could never see past becoming the XO... they'd never dream of being the Captain.

Then there's the Captain of the ship. He helps to plot the course and oversee ship functions. But if you think it stops there... you're wrong. As time progressed most ships were bought by large shipping companies. These companies had an entire group of executives. While the Captain might dream of being promoted... the slaves, of course, never saw past the Captain. Can you?

But it doesn't stop there. Remember, companies need investors. Cargo needs insurance. You have wealthy investors that do nothing more than sign their name to a piece of paper... and these people typically made more money than even the best-paid corporate executive. Do you think any of the slaves ever said "I want to be an insurance underwriter someday..." ??? Of course not.

It's a matter of perspective. Where are you? Are you the slave turned master? Are you looking to be your own Captain... forgetting that your underlings could revolt at any time and tied to the whims of others? Or are you striving to be the investor? Putting your money to work and enjoying complete time freedom.

Remember. When your time is free, you can easily invest in multiple businesses. There's no reason to risk everything on one venture! That's the meaning of retirement... complete time freedom and a massive residual income.

Think about it...

About the Author
Aaron is an experienced Small Business Consultant with years of experience working with start-ups. More articles can be found at (


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