Once upon a time in the 19th and 20th century there were two young men, one a Polish refugee and the other born at a council estate in Hackney, East London. They both went on to become very successful in business but their journeys started off as a market stall trader, and as a greengrocer. The men I am talking about are Michael Mark, founder of M&S, and Lord Alan Sugar founder of Amstrad respectively. Just like Michael Marks, and Lord Sugar all the large corporations we see today were started by individuals with a vision.
We live in a time where more and more people taking control of destiny by following in the footsteps of Michael Marks and Lord Sugar, pursuing their entrepreneurial vision. I am a huge advocate for people taking control and starting up their own businesses, however I’ve noticed a problem! The problem is that many new age entrepreneurs start their business with the same mindset as their corporate counterparts. Following the exact same principles and practises birthed out of the industrial revolution e.g. Monday – Friday, 9-5.
We all know (well, I’d hope so anyway) that Monday – Friday, 9-5 was influenced by the industrial revolutions, even starting off as a 14 hours working day. Thank goodness for Robert Owens who advocated that people should not work more than 8 hours per day. Who knows how if things would have been now if it wasn’t for Owens. Remember the days you hated working Monday – Friday, 9-5 yet why is it still being repeated when people start their own business? Why go through all that hassle to setting yourselves free only to start it allover again? Have you forgotten the days when you hated going into work on a Monday? When you wished you could work part-time so you could spend more time with friends and family? What happened to that feeling of freedom when you backflipped off the corporate ladder?
The truth is, this blog isn’t about anti-working Monday – Fridays, 9-5, or an issue against the industrial revolution. What I really want to highlight is CONFORMITY and a LACK OF AUTHENTICITY in the business world. Too many entrepreneurs and business owners just follow the crowd, doing things the same way as everyone else. There is no real authenticity in the way we set up and run businesses today. We all know that the current system of work isn’t sustainable but yet we still subscribe to it in our own ventures.
I’ve noticed that many people don’t take out the time to change their mindsets, or discover their authenticity before starting up. It really breaks my heart to see many new entrepreneurs putting themselves through headache and pain, simply because the issue of conformity which plagues society hasn’t been addressed. Until that’s addressed I’m afraid to say its only a matter of time until we see many new businesses experience the same fate large firms, such as BHS. I truly believe that we can as a global society, if we decide, can create a new company culture that is fit for purpose in the 21st century, and aligned to people’s behaviour, attitude, and ways of doing things. A culture where people can look forward to going into work because it fits around their lifestyle, family, friends etc.
QUIT following the crowd! Look within and ask yourself, how do I really want to do it? Be authentic! You don’t have to wait for the global culture to change before you change. Start now and run your business the way you truly want to do it! Find your own fit. Create a company culture that is sustainable, fit for purpose, and most importantly one that works around your lifestyle. Work to live, not live to work. You are now the boss, so do it your way. Be brave and follow your authenticity!
Why not begin that change by giving yourself, and your employees Mondays off. They might just love you forever. Or here’s another idea – use Monday to plan for the week and only work half day.
I leave you with this question; how are you creating your vision? It all starts with thinking differently, and following your authenticity.
Love you all! #NewGen