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Links > Business Articles > Starting a Business >

Business Owners Don’t Have Rostered Days Off

By: Kirsty O'Callaghan, Owner, Unity Words | Friday 22 April, 2016

Many business owners limit their potential to succeed and fail due to the way they think of themselves within their business. KIRSTY O’CALLAGHAN addresses a common hazard that small business owners don’t see coming. 

A client I am working with is expanding her business and at the same time beginning her next degree. She arrived at our session feeling challenged to implement a schedule that worked for her activities on a fortnightly basis. As she was sitting there fidgeting and feeling quite distressed by the task at hand, she blurted out, “Am I going to lose my Tuesday rostered day off (RDO)?” 

I paused, and then said, “Business owners don’t have RDOs. Are you a business owner or an employee?” 

Successful business owners and executives know that nine to five thinking has no place in their world. Their conversations with me always centre on checking emails at midnight and rising between four to five am so they can get in some exercise before sitting at their desk ready for the day. They also speak about the ability to be flexible for family demands and the luncheons and events they attend, which of course are work related. 

To get the results they are aiming for, business owners know there will be weeks, even months, when a 60-hour week is required, and most of that will not be paid up front. They juggle accounts and bills to make ends meet until the invoices are paid and that big client is landed. 

Business owners are constantly reinventing themselves and their business to meet the demands of a rapidly changing economy and buyer demands. They create job descriptions and lists of everything that is required to be done for the business to run smoothly and grow, and then jump in and either do it or delegate or outsource it. 

The challenge is ever present for the business owner or executive to be the best and to show up every day with as much passion and drive as the day before. Many struggle with having the discipline to do this when nobody is watching. 

What did I say to my client to support her flip in thinking? The shift in thinking had begun with the question I had asked her, “Are you a business owner, or an employee?” She said that question had opened up possibilities she had previously been ignoring. I pointed out to her that successful business owners never really stop working, they are just very clever at choosing what they do and when they do it. They are aware of their mental, emotional and physical needs, and hyper aware of what their business needs from them to thrive. Business owners love that they don’t have a boss telling them what to do, yet understand and take responsibility for the accountability that is placed on them. 

Most business owners have a dream, but they don’t just rely on the dream. They put in an extra 10 per cent above a great employee; they cry, sweat and get exhausted. They have choices and communicate these choices, benefits and ramifications to their families clearly. They create supporting teams around them and work hard. When they have a day off they know how to have fun, laugh and relax to replenish and rejuvenate so the feeling of satisfaction and pride in being a business owner far outweighs the effort. 

What employees generally view as sacrifice, business owners will view as a necessity to success. How do you think? Are you thinking as a business owner or an employee?


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