It’s Saturday, and I’m off to work again. Not that working on Saturday is new to me – I generally spend most weekends working on my long-term investment projects. This weekend is different, however, because I am going to work for my employer. You see, the weather right now is very nice, and during the summer, the work I do requires we take advantage of every good day possible. It looks like this may not be my last weekend at work either. My own investment work is forced to a standstill.
Working for different companies through the years, I have thought about what it means to be an employee. When we are children, we are taught to be selfless, work hard, and succeed. These values remain in our society throughout our lives, and people generally expect you to “go the extra mile” to help your employer out. I feel like a lot of employees give their lives to their employer, sometimes without getting a lot back. This brings me to my original dilemma of Saturday work. I am not at all bothered about working on Saturday. I do however feel that when I work for someone else, they ultimately benefit more from the fruits of my labor than I do.
When you work for a company, they take your human effort, and by combining it with everyone else’s at the company, create a product that is ultimately exchanged for money. Now, imagine for a moment that everyone was paid the percentage that they were worth to the final product. Where would the profit be for the company? Sure, the company is worth a small amount as the “glue” factor that holds all the employees together, but ultimately, it’s a matter of taking human productivity and reselling it at a profit.
Am I selfish for wanting to be the beneficiary of my own hard work? This is the main reason I strive to be an entrepreneur – I know that what I accomplish is for myself and my family. The values of entrepreneurship are also very strongly rooted in America, and I find myself torn between these two “value systems” of work.
Anyone else out there struggle? Anyone else torn between throwing every effort into your traditional 9-5 versus the desire to work for yourself?
Martin, our guest writer this week, offers a dilemma that’s been leaving Aridni deep in thought since he suggested the topic. We know that Martin works pretty dang hard, and we’re anxious to see what you think, readers.