Can anyone be a business owner?

  • by kaibizzen
  • Apr 14, 2021
  • Blog

I love any questions that starts with the word “can”.

My reason is encapsulated in this cartoon:

If you are a parent or a grandparent, I’m sure it brought a smile to your face, as it did mine.

So… Can anyone be a business owner?

Or, in other words, “does everyone have the ability to be a business owner”?

A Question of Ability

As a business owner, myself, I’m very grateful that the answer to the question, “Can anyone be a business owner?” is, quite simply, “no”.


Because as a business owner I want people whom I can engage to help me in my business. To do the things I don’t enjoy doing, that I’m not as good as them to do and/or to take the workload off my shoulders.

I’m very aware of my capabilities. I’m very aware that if it was up to me to do it all, there would be an awful lot that would be left undone. I’m very aware of what I love to do and what I don’t love to do in the running of our business.

Why People Go In To Business

In nearly 18 years of working with business owners, I’ve met many who went into business for one of the following reasons:

  1. They are very technically capable of doing their job. Therefore, it only stands to reason that would start a business in that field. However, one of their biggest struggles in business is that they find it difficult to step out of doing the technical work because they “can’t find anyone” who can do it as quick or as effectively as they can; doing the technical work is where they are most comfortable; the importance of the rest of what needs to be done to have a successful business is not fully understood.
  2. They worked for a boss in a particular field, who had “no idea what they were doing”. Surely, they could do it better than they did? Surely, it couldn’t be that hard?
  3. They were paid a redundancy which gave them some money to start their own business
  4. They firmly believed they could make more money and have more time off than they did as an employee.
  5. They believed themselves to be very determined and therefore that determination would amount to something when starting their business.

The challenges with these reasons are:

  1. Having great technical ability does not give you great business ownership ability. In fact, the technical component is the “easiest” part of running the business. It’s sales, marketing, financial management and people leadership abilities that prove time and time again to be the greatest reasons why, in my opinion, a lot of people don’t have the ability to be a business owner.

    If you want to be successful in business, not only do you need to be a master in the technical side, but you also need to BE a master of business as well. Either that or have the money to pay someone right from the get go, to do those things for you.
  2. Your boss who ‘had no idea’ probably struggled with the other areas of business (apart from the technical side), and/or didn’t have the spare cash to pay someone else to do it for them… possibly just like you…
  3. Having money to start a business does not mean you’ve got the skill, knowledge and experience required to grow and maintain a business. You would need to hope you have enough money to continue to pay someone else to do the “other stuff” for you.
  4. If your focus on the so called “rewards” of owning your own business, you’re in for a shock. Firstly, many successful entrepreneurs such as Richard Branson reminds us that when you start a business you’ve got to be prepared to work 7 days a week 14 hours a day. Employees have the mindset of a 38 hour work, 4 weeks annual leave and 2 weeks carers leave. This is far from the reality of being a business owner.

    Secondly, your focus is on the wrong thing. You need a focus on what the world wants and needs. Your reward will come as a result of something that is equal or greater value to your effort.
  5. Justine Musk (first wife Elon), sums up the 5th challenge perfectly – “You’re determined. So what? You haven’t been racing naked through shark-infested waters yet. Will you be just as determined when you wash up on some deserted island, disoriented and bloody and ragged and beaten and staring into the horizon with no sign of rescue?”

Reid Hoffman also says, ‘Entrepreneurs jump off a cliff and build parachutes on their way down.’

That quote truly embodies what it means to be a busines owner and go after your dreams.

Do you have that ability?
Do you have that level of commitment?
Do you have that much determination?

There are many that do… but there are many more that don’t.

Who Can Be A Business Owner?

Over the years Rob and I have had ownership of several business, the last nearly 18 of which has been a business coaching and mentoring business. On top of that we have a Master of Business, post graduate degree.

In my experience, the more I learn about myself, my abilities and my business the more I realise I still have much to learn.

In my opinion, being a business owner has been one of the most rewarding AND most difficult things I’ve done in my life.

Firstly, my reward has come from my own personal development, because as quoted by E James Rohan, I’ve had to “work harder” on myself than my business. Why? Because what is happening in my business is a direct reflection of me – my beliefs about myself, money and other people. It’s a direct reflection of my capability not only to do the technical work, but my ability to provide leadership to other people and my business acumen.

Secondly, together my husband Rob and I are able to share with others the things that we’ve learned about ourselves, working as a married couple in business, and the highs and lows of being a business owner. Our experiences have been the greatest asset to our business.

Thirdly, I DO believe that you can earn more money and have more time off than you can as an employee. BUT it takes many years and a lot of hard work to get it to that point.

Can anyone be a business owner – No. Not just anyone can be a business owner.

However, if you are prepared to do whatever it takes, if you are prepared to surround yourself with the best support and help you can find, you CAN do it.

Is your business giving you the results you want? Is your business giving you the financial freedom and time freedom you want for yourself and your family? Reach out today for a confidential conversation. We’re here to support you in achieving exactly the life you want for yourself and your loved ones.

02 Oct

Panel Discussion

Tuesday, 6:30pm Quest Cannon Hill

What does it take to actually remove yourself from the day-to-day grind of business? Learn from our panel of Business Owners who've Been There, Done That.