What a Real Job Can Do For An Entrepreneur

by Martin

You’ve just graduated college. You’ve got options, and you’re probably wondering which one’s the best, especially in regards to your career. Some of your options include:

  • Do some traveling, perhaps buy a one way ticket to Hawaii and sleep on the beach!
  • Find a job in sales, they’re easy to get.
  • Start an online business, or perhaps start a blog.
  • Play black ops in your parents basement since you’re too poor to move out.
  • Get a “real” job.

Although some of those options look appealing, I’m actually going to recommend the “real” job option… and here’s why.

What’s a Real Job?

Real jobs, you know, the one’s with titles, benefits, and set hours are something other people are impressed with. When you’re at a networking event you can say, ahhh yes, I’m a customer service representative with XYZ corp, we make a billion dollars a year and are in 80 countries.

When someone says something like this to me, it basically means:

“I put with a lot of crap from people from 80 countries and work for people who have a lot more money than I do”

It may sound good in paper, but so does lead custodial representative (janitor).

A real job is something that has set hours, is easy to define because it has set tasks, and is something that is generally accepted by the majority of people you talk to because they can relate.

You May Just Like Drinking the Cool Aid

As you can tell, I’m not really all about corporate culture. I’d rather try to create my own path, but for many, the corporate culture is something they really enjoy. If you take my advice and get a “real” job after college, and you find that you like living the life of Jim from, “The Office.” If you never try, you’ll never know.

However, you’re going to have to really buy into the culture of the company you’re getting a real job at. This means answering the phone with enthusiasm, living by the mission statement, and playing white elephant in the office every Christmas.

What Does a Real Job Have to Offer?

Real jobs offer security, or at least the idea of security (Lehman brothers ring a bell?). You know what your paycheck will be down to the cent, you know exactly what you’ll be doing each day, and you have a predictable life. For the majority of people, that’s calming, and it’s worth it.

Real jobs also offer the herd mentality in which you’re sharing goals, ideas, and thoughts with hundreds of other people. You’re working as a team towards a common goal, which can actually feel pretty good. However, it also means that you’re simply a cog in a system and you’re probably only doing one task over and over again.

Why Real Jobs are Great for Entrepreneurs

I’ve had my fair share of real jobs. I’ve audited pricing reports for industrial furniture, been a customer service representative, and done my fair share of filing. The best thing I took from it was this: it motivated me to continue to work on projects that broke me free of the cubicle. If you’re thinking about starting a business I’d say get a “real” job to help motivate yourself even more since you’ll want to get out as soon as possible.

Since you’re just graduating college you’re not going to have much money anyways. Get a real job for a while to develop good habits of working 9-5, getting up in the morning, being responsible, and start socking away money for your business ideas.

So go ahead, get yourself a corporate “real” job after college, then make the choice whether or not it’s something you want to continue.

Readers, am I being too hard on real jobs?

Do you think college grads wanting to start a business should get a real job first for the experience and income source?

This was a guest post from Ryan.

I hope you enjoyed this piece!

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 doctor S

There are two sides to this just like you explained.

The corporate job will you give you stability right off the back, the ability to build up some income, get good benefits, and start that retirement plan earyl(which is often ignored). But again, it is a corporate job, I did it, I am still in it, and I am not happy. But i had to do it b/c i needed the money to pay down all these student loans.

The startup/entrepreneur life is a great place to start too, if your situation allows you b/c it will be like you never left college. I dont mean it from a social aspect, I mean it from a cultural aspect. Everyday is relaxed and free to do something to get the job done. No red tape or processes of “how to do things the right way” restricting your state of mind. Yeah I wish I could get into this world, but give me a few years.

Just my $1.02.

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2 Budgeting in the Fun Stuff

I keep my real job so that I have benefits and guaranteed cash while I grow my dream job (blogging full time). I made about $2000 after taxes in 4 weeks at my “real” job and about $830 blogging. We can’t save for our goals as planned on $800 (that would barely cover the extra medical benefits I’d need to get), so I keep plugging along for the benefits at a day job. :-)

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3 Budgeting in the Fun Stuff

Yeah, the benefits are hard to pass up. My medical would be $2500 a year or more without my job and I wouldn’t get my 6% matching in a 401(k), so that’s another $2100 a year. So, I’m really interested in making $40,000 a year or more with blogging alone before I give up a job with benefits.

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4 MD

This was a guest post and I really enjoy to publish articles offering different perspectives.

I’m thinking experiences from a “real job” will all depened on the actual work and the people in your environment.

How would you treat your blog differently if it became your main source of income all of a sudden?

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