Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Everyone should spend at least 2 years self employed

Its chaos on the roads round here, the M40 is closed because of an accident and we had snow last night followed by a deep freeze. The main road at the top of my street is at a standstill and I can't get out to get to work. Fortunately I am salaried and can work from home, except I am supposed to be "up north" for an important meeting at 1pm, which couldn't get to because it took 45 minutes to do 3 miles.

Unlike a large proportion of the country, especially those employed by the state, I know what ts like to be self employed - if you I don't get to work you don't get paid as I was self employed and ran my own business for 6 years. As it happens I have some workmen in doing 2 separate, small, projects on the house. Neither set of workers can get in and as they are on a fixed price contract it means they have effectively lost a day's pay - they have my sympathy.

Being self employed really concentrates the mind on doing a good job as a key to generating the next one. The unevenness of the work teaches money management in a way no amount of preaching in schools and by politicians can. It also makes you really appreciate a salary when you get one, not the point of forelock tugging but the need to work hard to justify the salary.

As a friend once said when listening to some bureaucrat whinging about work conditions, perhaps they should be made to be self employed before they get their nice cushy jobs on a regular salary, they might appreciate them.

I think that in future if I am employing someone I will look for a period of self employment on their CV as part of the selection process.


peter whale said...

I am now retired living in France. Your post set off my memory of my pay structure when I first got married in 1964. I worked for my father and was paid once a year, we would wait for the accountant to show the profit the company made and then share out the proceeds. I was then left to work out how much money I could spend after assessing how much the coming years domestic expenses would be. This situation went on for five years and gave me a lesson in money management I would never have gained in any other way. Our M.P.s should be paid the same way we would then see vast changes in the way they spend our money,

The Great Simpleton said...

Of course there is an argument that MP's shouldn't even be paid. Supply far outstrips demand so classic economics says that the price should collapse.

That would teach them how to manage money.