What makes one an owner? Are YOU an owner? That’s probably a great question to answer in the launch issue of a magazine called Owner, eh? Let’s start with that.
Are You an Owner?
You’re an owner if:
- You believe in taking responsibility for the course of your life and your business.
- You believe that self-improvement is a daily practice, not something to “get done.”
- You feel relationships with customers, mentors, and others in your community have value beyond the single sale.
- You intend to learn more, reach further, and connect with people to help each other grow.
An owner, as defined, works to improve worth by growing capabilities and connections.
So What? An Entrepreneur?
An entrepreneur is someone who assembles a business and assumes a greater part of the risk for her efforts. Lots of people throw the name around when they might really mean “freelancer” or “solo actor.” The difference is that an entrepreneur essentially is gambling on building a business asset. You don’t have to be an entrepreneur to be an owner, though you likely share the same DNA at certain parts.
Here’s the thing: you could be an employee-preneur (which I think I stole from James Altucher ) and still be an owner. You could be the CEO of your cubicle (I know I stole this from Tom Peters!), and if you care about the above, you are quite likely an owner. And to be clear, you can own a company and not really be an owner (maybe you’ve surrendered. Maybe you just want to cash out and live on a beach and do nothing again but cash checks and drink fruity drinks with umbrellas.
An owner is someone who chooses to learn more, own their choices, grow their potential and their abilities, and connect with people beyond simply trying to sell.
The World is Definitely Changing
The number of cubicle jobs in the western world are vanishing rapidly. Dead weight has been fired (or “downsized”). The middle management layer has vanished. Roles for life? Gone. Careers spanning decades at the same place? Almost never. Read James Altucher’s book, Choose Yourself! and I can stop talking about all this. But just realize this:
It’s harder than ever to maintain “mediocre” if you work for someone else.
With that in mind, what’s happening? Where’s everybody going? That’s tricky to answer. There are some people who are quitting their jobs to make funny videos and finding a living. (We’re not recommending this.) There are people who have decided to build their own more “bespoke” version of an existing business by mashing two different ideas together to produce a new spin ( Dollar Shave Club, Square, or Breather). But remember, there are ways to create an “owner” culture anywhere. (More on this in subsequent issues).
What is the Mindset of the Owner?
I’m working through what an owner things about that makes him or her different from the folks who are still working from the mindset that the world can’t be changed and that we all exist to “win at all costs.” An owner, near as I can tell, cares about this:
Core – our responsibility, our self, our dreams and goals going beyond our thoughts and into the world.
Structure – without structure, there’s no way for our core to be expressed.
Communication – we need to express ourselves, to share, to report, and to create (first thoughts, then words, then deeper communication and understanding).
Capabilities – we work daily to expand our capabilities (personally, professionally, through our network).
Opportunities – we train our eye to see opportunities, and we train our hearts to help others find their way to theirs.
Community – we work from the mindset that we serve our family, friends, our allies, and those who give us their attention.
Worth – we strive to expand our worth and the worth of those around us, in as many facets as that word evokes.
Growth – we grow ourselves, our community, our circle, and all we can help in some way.
Does any of that resonate with you? That’s what we’ll work through in the comments and in subsequent issues. We’ll tweak it together.
Action and the Owner
I was thinking about what separates owners most from others. It’s that we take action. It’s that we find a way. We see obstacles as something fun to navigate around. We don’t wait for permission, but instead, we figure out our own way. We’re not afraid to admit when we’re wrong, and in fact, failure becomes a class we take and graduate from before winning at our goals.
Myths of the Owner
There are myths about this whole thing.
- Myth: Owners don’t sleep. – The opposite is true. We see the body and the mind and the spirit as every bit as important as your business pursuits. It’s all one thing to us.
- Myth: Owners have to “win” which means you have to lose. – We love helping others win. We believe that “a rising tide raises all boats.”
- Myth: Competitors are there to be crushed. – Bologna! We compete with one person: ourselves.
- Myth: Owners can’t work for big companies. – Google is a stacked deck full of owners. So is Microsoft (though the last many years haven’t let us see them as clearly as you will shortly). So, this is not a matter of big vs small bias.
- Myth: Owners can’t work for small or solo companies. – “Yeah, but they’re Google.” Who cares? You’re a plumber? Great! You can be an Owner.
- Myth: It’s all about the Benjamins. – No. It’s about worth. We will beat the concepts of worth and value into you in this magazine.
And the rest of the myths? We’ll find those together and pop holes in them.
Today’s the Day
Take ownership. Start now. No matter where you are in your pursuits, accept this: “I am an owner.” From this one admission, you’ll be on your way to entering into the age of the owner, where we work daily to grow capabilities and connections in pursuit of improving our worth and that of our larger family of connections (our monchu!).
And if you’re down, and if you like the concept of ownership, and if you’re ready to explore this deeper, start by sharing what you’ve read, and see what others have to say about it, too. Maybe you’ll meet some owners on the very first day you learned about this and start improving your worth right away.
Ready? Go! And Stay! And welcome to Owner.