“I always wanted to have my own company,” explained the CEO [or “Director”, if you want].
We were on a business trip in Berlin, Germany [last month]. Even though I don`t work for his company, he invited me to go along with his team to a german conference. “We need somebody who speaks German,” he told me, inviting me. “All the costs of the trip are on me… if you have time, of course.”
I was honestly happy to go to this trip with him. One of the reasons: I wanted to get some advice from an experienced businessman, regarding the business school that I am planning to go for my Masters next year.
I accepted his invitation. The next week… We went to Germany.
“Do you think investing $50,000 in business school is worth it?” I asked him, as we were standing at the stand of his company in Berlin conference.
“Yeah, I think it is,” he said. “Any investment in YOURSELF is worth it.”
“But… I mean, it is not little money after all…”
He nodded and said: “I understand that. Let me put it this way: If I were you, I would go to a good business school without hesitation and get a Management degree.”
I kept silence and listened to him attentively.
“Look,” he continued. “After you graduate from the business school, you will find a job on a management position. You will have a management career.”
I felt like I was at the lecture of a business “professor” at university. But this lecture was different than any other lecture at uni. It was INTERESTING, because this professor [unlike many others] has actual EXPERIENCE running his own business.
“After some 10 years of management experience, you might even get into the board of top management of some company. The average salary of these guys is around $50,000.”
At this moment he stopped, looked down as if thinking about something and then said, “You know, I always wanted to manage my own company. But if you work for somebody [as a manager], that is not bad either. You will manage NOT YOUR OWN company, but you will manage a company of SOMEBODY ELSE.”
He smiled at this point. Then he laughed at his own thoughts and said [smiling with all his white teeth]:
“If that company goes bankrupt, you don`t get stressed at all. You just change the company you work for.”
For a person who is 100% responsible for the success or failure of the company, this was true and funny at the same time, because if his company goes bankrupt he cannot afford being NOT stressed.
“If somebody offered me such a job on a management position, maybe I would even stop doing this business,” he pointed at the green logo of his company and said. “and I`d probably accept that job offer.”
“Would you work for $10,000 a month?” I asked, being so curious about his story.
“No, actually… for 10k I wouldn`t work.” he responded with a serious look on his face. “But I`d work for 20k”
By this time one of the guys of our team [he also has his own company] had joined our conversation and exclaimed, as if being confused: “Really? Would you really work for 20k?”
“Well, yeah… Why not? This is quite enough: you will live in a good big house, you`ll eat good food, wear nice clothes, you`ll send your kids to a good school, travel…,” he was very serious about this idea. “Besides, you will not have to stress 24/7 like when you have your own business. Work from Monday to Friday. From 9 to 18. And spend the rest of your time with your family and for your hobby.”
This is one of the perspectives on life and work. Some people prefer managing their OWN company. Some people prefer managing a company of SOMEBODY ELSE.
As far as I am concerned, I want to get a degree from a good business school and have a management career.
Will I have my own business? Will I be just a manager at some company? I don`t really know. Time will show. I just want to spend my life doing what I enjoy doing 🙂