CEOWORLD magazine - Latest - CEO Debate - Want to succeed as a digital entrepreneur? The key is working smarter, not harder

CEO Debate

Want to succeed as a digital entrepreneur? The key is working smarter, not harder

Hemi Hossain

When I was working full-time, working overtime, and putting all my energy into ‘climbing the ladder’, I found that I was chasing one dream and one dream only: to get rich! 

Slowly, my hard work began to pay off and I got a promotion, which led me to work harder for the next promotion. I kept piling on the workload and spent more of my time in the office, working harder every day to get to the top. I got there. I made it to the top! But it came at a big price. 

At the top, I was supposed to be happy, rich, financially stable and with enough free time, right? Instead, I found myself in more debt. I became very anxious and suffered from anxiety attacks, falling very ill again in 2012. This wasn’t part of the plan.

I realised that all my over-time and hard work was only benefitting the company I worked for. My lifestyle was a complete mess. I had no down time or family time. I had compromised my goals and integrity in order to get ahead. 

Wanting to be rich is a fantastic goal but working yourself to the bone is not the answer. You must embrace risk and be willing to be uncomfortable if you want to be rich and successful. This can mean detaching from the stability of a regular job. To transform yourself from employee to entrepreneur. 

There is a limit to what you can earn in a job. You might climb the managerial ladder and progress a little but, once you get more, it makes you want even more. You run the risk of becoming materialistic, focusing solely on the money. More disposable income means more spending, which leads to more things, and more debt. However, unless you find a way  to convert $100,000 into $1,000,000, you are still stuck in that ‘middle-class’ mindset. Being rich will always be too far away. Working smarter is the only way forward. 

Now, I know this may be a new idea to some people. We have been conditioned to believe that hard work is the only way. And though I believe in the power of hustling and creating massive opportunities with working hard, we eventually arrive at the conclusion that working harder does not guarantee us more money. 

Let me explain. 

Here’s why: 

  1. You Become Too Attached to Comfort
    When people have a secure job they begin to feel safe and comfortable. They save a little as they go along in their comfortable world. Now, there’s nothing wrong with comfort and security but all too often people become complacent and decide to choose comfort over growth. When you’re on cruise-control in life, why would you touch the accelerator right? A secure job and life can be great for a while but if you decide never to take risks or push yourself out of your comfort zone then you’re choosing comfort as your primary objective. If you lost your job tomorrow, how would your life change? Would it kick-start you into a choice to follow your dream, or would you just look for another job?

    You can choose to shake things up a little. Right now, you can choose to make one small change and take charge of your future.

    Working in a job does not really allow or encourage you to take risks. You are exchanging your time for money. When you’re trading time for money, your income will always be limited.This creates a repetitive cycle and your own personal ‘comfort zone’. There is no room here to create additional income-producing activities.

    You need to take risks to create wealth in life. Entrepreneurs are always willing to take big risks and lay things on the line to be successful.

  2. Time is More Valuable Than Money
    The incredible thing about money is that you can always make more of it. Unfortunately, we can’t say the same for time. No human on earth has the magical ability to produce more time than the other. When you spend time, that’s it! When you spend money, you can always get more. When you work for a boss you don’t get the chance to use that valuable time for yourself. You use it for them in order to grow their business. Sure, you get paid but you are using your most valuable commodity (time) on their dreams and goals and not your own. If you’re on a salary or contract arrangement, you may be working over-time too — that’s time you’re not getting back! When you work for yourself, you may in fact have to work harder than when you work for someone else, but you’re in control of how to spend your time. You are using time to benefit you and your future.

    Most jobs these days are a trade-off. You are trading your time for money. You are given a certain amount of money in order to work a certain amount of time. This simple equation of exchanging time for money has a limit. You eventually hit a roadblock! Why? Because you only have a certain amount of time in each day and each week, which means that you’ earning potential is limited. That’s the system when you exchange time for money. Time is the most valuable commodity out there. If you are constantly trading your time for money, then being wealthy may be a goal that is never achieved. There are only 24 hours in a day. Your choice now is to use them wisely.

  3. You Stop Learning
    Working within the constraints of a nine-to-five job can hinder self-education and learning due to the workload. By the time you finish your work day, you are probably too exhausted to even think about doing anything other than sleep.

    As an entrepreneur, I find that I put aside a great deal of time for self-improvement through learning. I take the time to learn more so that I can teach more and therefore create more opportunities to make more money. Capitalising on self-education is crucial. However, when I was working those long hours, I found it difficult to stay on task with my learning. There are just not enough hours in the day to do both.

    Rich people understand that true wealth is not measured in terms of an annual salary or wages but in net worth and deeper ways that can’t be measured like freedom and time. It is a completely different way of thinking about your personal earnings. And they continue to grow rich because of this mindset.

    Being rich isn’t just about money. True wealth is about doing what you love while creating time and financial freedom.

  4. You Think Saving is the Saviour
    Saving money is an awesome thing to do. Who doesn’t want a handsome sum of money nestled comfortably in their bank account? But you need to understand the huge difference between saving money and making money. You may be able to save fifty dollars on changing your electricity supplier, but your electricity supplier isn’t making you money. You may save a few dollars by skipping that additional muffin with your morning coffee but that muffin isn’t producing money for you. Let me repeat: saving money and making money are not the same thing.

    Both are good but you need to know the difference first. Making more money means you can save more money. Investing your money is smarter than simply trying to hoard small leftovers from your weekly pay packet. Investing in your business can help you make money and save money all at the same time. Investing the money that you make on other things that also grow your money is even better. You may have heard the quote, “money doesn’t grow on trees” and it doesn’t, but money can grow in business. Businesses are designed to be mega money plantations that grow stronger each year.

    This doesn’t mean that money will simply jump into your pocket, you have to make it work for you first. You have to be dedicated to making your money grow. Entrepreneurs are usually great at this. They can see the potential to make money and are driven to understand that money can be saved, grown, invested and compounded. They educate themselves in a whole manner of ways, always looking for the edge. Employees on the other hand often focus on chipping away and using any leftovers to save in a bank account. Employees are usually more worried about losing their ‘cash cow’ (their boss) whereas entrepreneurs know they are the boss and the cash cow. They make money work for them like an employee.

    Investing is one way to make money your employee. You see, the entire role of an employee is to make money for the boss right? Well, money can do this too. Money is the ultimate employee—it can make more money for you, without you having to pay for its holiday or sick pay. It doesn’t complain or ask for benefits either. It simply grows if you know how to invest it right.

  5. You’re Making Someone Else Rich
    When you’re an employee your role is made in order to make your boss rich. This is fine if you’re happy with that arrangement. You work for them and you help them make more money. They give you a limited supply of that money in order to feel safe as   an employee.  Now, there’s nothing wrong with making someone else rich. I love making other people rich too. I just like to do it a different way. I like to make people rich through my business, not theirs.

    If you’re spending forty hours a week applying yourself to someone else’s cause then you’re essentially spending forty hours of your week focusing on making them money. But what about you in all this?

    Wouldn’t you prefer to spend those hours making yourself rich? Getting your business off the ground and flying high? Perhaps if you dedicated some time to your business, then you could make more people rich and give other people in a job.

    Security is a big factor here. You can choose to make your life better with the ideas you have to create a business, which will create wealth and time, or you can continue working in a job, which will not really take you anywhere.

Having one million dollars in the bank does not need to be just a fantasy. However, many people believe that you must have that kind of money before you can achieve complete freedom in life. 

You can do it, slowly and surely. Focusing on one thing at a time will help you become a master at it. As Confucius said, “The man who moves a mountain begins by carrying away small stones.”  All you need to do is finally take the risk.

Written by Hemi Hossain.
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CEOWORLD magazine - Latest - CEO Debate - Want to succeed as a digital entrepreneur? The key is working smarter, not harder
Hemi Hossain
Hemi Hossain is a Digital Entrepreneur, Business Coach and author of Fire Your Boss (Dean Publishing $39.95). An internationally acclaimed speaker, Hemi dedicates his life to coaching others in order to surface their true potential and make a positive, global impact of change and community.

Hemi Hossain is an opinion columnist for the CEOWORLD magazine. Connect with him through LinkedIn. For more information, visit the author’s website CLICK HERE.