People always ask what it’s like to have left behind the nine to five world. They want to know how it feels to be able to get up in the morning without racing into the shower and out the door. They long for the luxury of the short commute into the living room where your desk sits and typing away at the computer until Noon in their yoga pants.
There are a couple of things they don’t realize.
The first is I never really had a nine to five job. In fact I was told by my very first sales manager in 1983 that I had to approach my job as if I was in business for myself. The company gave me a desk and a phone and a business card, but I was ultimately the one in charge of how much money I would make. The more I sold the higher my commissions. In the world of radio and television advertising there is no true nine to five – just the illusion of a day that looks like that.
You left the office when the job was done. Other days the job was never going to get finished. Beside, in sales and in marketing you’re never really completely “off” work. If you’re good your antennae are trained to always be looking – for a lead, to see what the competition is doing, what the next trend will be.
The second thing they don’t get is just because you are no longer beholden to the corporate behemoth does not mean you work less. In fact in most situations I know of it means you will work more. At odder hours. You may take Friday afternoon off but work all day Sunday.
I’m still never completely “off” work. Take today. Technically I’m ‘away’ for the weekend, but – I have this blog challenge I committed myself to. Luckily I can do that from here.
note: This is Day #5 of a 30 Day Experiment. Here are the details on how it all started.