Measuring the Cost

Being an entrepreneur is a full-time job that is demanding of your time and attention. The family and those close to you can become neglected along our entrepreneurial journey. How can we protect those precious relationships? This section discusses some of the costs associated with success and providing safeguards that will protect our loved ones along this journey.

In Chapter 7 of “A Field Guide for the Hero’s Journey”, Jeff Sandefer discusses the importance of resting (p93), something which entrepreneurs hate doing. It is also important to rest after a great victory to protect us from making unwise decisions in the euphoria of the moment. Rev. Robert Sirico describes the difference between slothful rest and resting while reflecting on important matters. He concludes that human life cannot be satisfying is it does not contain a dimension of contemplation and reflection. The authors ask whether electronic devices prevent us from stepping away for a while to rest and recuperate.

In the article from the Acton Foundation called, “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness: A Cautionary Tale”, the authors discuss the how we, as Americans, pursue happiness and the price we sometimes pay for it.

The authors explain to us the difference between happiness, satisfaction and fulfillment, and help understand why so many people are attracted by a false search for happiness, power or wealth. These are some of the findings and conclusions:

Quotations from the article describing important principles of the hero’s journey

  • Money will not buy happiness
  • Our natural disposition is towards happiness so you are already quite happy.
  • Later in life we are far more likely to regret risks not taken than mistakes made.
  • Quite simply, we long for fulfillment while engaged in a futile pursuit of happiness
  • As we slip from self-interest to self-centeredness and finally, to self-delusion, what should be gratitude slips away, to be replaced by wounded pride.
  • A Hero’s Journey does not promise a life full of happiness. On the contrary, it means facing dragons and giants,” challenges that stretch you to your limits and sometimes beyond.
  • Have you ever been so engrossed in a challenge or activity that you lost track of time? If you choose instead to see life as a gift, you are likely to marvel each day at your good luck and the kindness of others.
  • Choose to live in a neighborhood you can afford rather than one where everyone is much wealthier.
  • Training yourself to suppress negative chatter and replace it with positive thoughts does make a difference
  • When it comes to work, you can choose a job, a career or a calling.
  • For some, the task is not so much finding the perfect job, as re-crafting an existing job so it plays to your strengths.
  • Along the journey, learn to embrace mistakes and adversity. Take more chances and suffer more defeats. Extend yourself.
  • Conquering your appetites by directly engaging them in a contest of will is usually counterproductive.
  • Find your calling.
  • Savor sensual pleasures.
  • Develop loving lifelong relationships with your spouse and your friends.
  • Be grateful.
  • Face the big questions now.
  • To find your place and who you are, you must lose yourself.

Jim Ritchie, in his book “The Ministry of Business”, discusses financial freedom in chapter 6 (p119). He describes having four accounts: an independence account, a savings account, a budget account, and, what he termed a gold account.

  1. Independence Account: this account is where we pay ourselves first and is also used to maintain profits and interests from investments, the gold account.
  2. Budget Account: this is where we keep money for our domestic expenses such as utility bills and living expenses.
  3. Savings Account: we keep money here for the irregular expenses such as vacation, medical and transport.
  4. Gold Account: Investments and assets.

In an article titled, “Attitude on Money”, Stephen W. Gibson discusses how to get money and what to do with it. He reminds us of the importance of discussing money because it is used to build things such as homes, schools and temples.

He says that money in and of itself is neither good nor evil. He advises that, “It isn’t the million dollars that is bad or evil but how it is used.” Quoting the parable of the Good Samaritan, Gibson shows how money can be used for good works.

To ensure that we understand the priorities, Gibson reminds us that the gospel has the power to make bad men good, and good men better. On the other hand, money usually does not make bad men good and good men better.

Should Latter-Day Saints seek after money? Gibson uses the scripture found in Jacob 2:18-19 to support the argument that we should, if we do it in the proper order; after we have received a hope in Christ we seek after money to do good. For example, Gibson describes the academy he and his wife created in the Philippines called the Academy for Creating Enterprise. He says that so far they’ve graduated 22 Filipino returned missionaries who are now becoming self-reliant by applying what they learned at the Academy.

Despite the good that can be done with money, Gibson cautions that there are some things over which money has no power. He described a good friend whose son was born with a heart condition. All the money in the world could not have saved that young baby’s life.

Gibson says that we make money by following the laws upon which it is predicated. (Doctrine and Covenants 130: 20-21). He adds that when we wish to accumulate wealth, and believe that we can do good things with it, we had better learn the laws and keep them so we can receive this promised blessing.

In the parable of the Talents, we see both the first and second individuals do what good merchants do. They appear to have engaged in the buying and selling of merchandise. The scripture says they “traded with the same” and they made a profit. That is what good merchants do, they buy low and sell high, and turn their inventory to make a profit. The individual who let his money sleep did not practice good business principles, was not blessed for his efforts and was instead punished for his lack of ambition.

Is Work/Life Balance Possible?

Ann Miura-Ko, from FLOODGATE and speaking at Stanford University in October, 27, 2010 suggested that there is a myth that one can actually strike a balance between work and life. She is the mother of two children and advises anyone with a family and trying to be an entrepreneur, that there is a struggle to achieve that balance. She says that you have to feel that passion for your new business because it will be demanding. Only a great venture will make taking time away from family like a worthy trade-ff.

Balancing Your Life and Career Successfully

Randy Komisar of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, speaking at Stanford University in April 28, 2004, explained that there is no balanced life in being a CEO. It is a 24/7 job and it is all-consuming.  After being a CEO, Komisar cut back on his activities to return some balance into his life so that he could have time for all the things he enjoyed. He said that it is essential to stay ethical and never put yourself in a situation where you can’t say no and walk away.  He reminded us that maintaining a balanced life is dynamic and changes as your priorities change with the different seasons of our lives. He advised us that people who know and respect us can be a powerful resource in helping us find the balance we need.

Corey Bell – TriFusion

Corey Bell is the grandson of a brick mason and the oldest of 13 children. He began helping his granddad stack bricks at the age of 8. But on a hot day under the North Carolina sun, a 15-year-old Bell informed his Grandfather that this life was “for the birds.” He graduated from Clemson, and went on to study law and business.

After years as an employee at various companies, he started TriFusion. Bell explains TriFusion with this analogy: “Let’s say you’re buying a car. You go to the Chrysler lot and pick out your car. But you want to add custom rims, window tinting; you know, you want it all tricked out. That’s what we do in the IT world. We pimp-out your ride.”

He explains how his company has touched the lives of his employees, customers, and the communities he serves.

Advice for young entrepreneurs? “That’s easy.” He says. “Entrepreneurship is about eliminating the word ‘can’t’ from your vocabulary.”

 

 

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