It may come to some of you as a bit of a shock but if you get paid to work, you are a business owner.

The people we ultimately work for are the people we provide services to. Are you sure you are clear about your role?

Even those of us who work as employees actually manage our own micro-business. As a micro-business owner, we offer a service to clients (also known as employers) and receive compensation (a salary).

When we "apply for a job", what we are doing in fact is going out and marketing our services to potential clients. Your cover letter and resume could be viewed as submitting a proposal to the client for a particular job. In fact, if you actually submitted a proposal, you might get a better response.

When the client offers us a job, they are submitting a offer to purchase services. In the case of an employee, this offer is typically (and hopefully) for an extended amount of time with an undetermined end date.

Payment for our services may include various forms of compensation including money (salary) and benefits. Despite what some people believe, benefits are not free. They are part of our expenses. Other expenses we incur which reduce our take-home pay might include things like parking, a supply of products to sell, training, the office space, lunch room, receptionist and other equipment (computer, telephone, stationery supplies, voice mail) we require in order to get the job done. It's true that many of these are shared services and they often need to be in order to keep our costs down but you also pay your employer to manage all of this for you. On the other hand, if your client was not providing these services, you would most likely have to on your own. If you work in a manufacturing or similar environment, can you imagine what it might cost you to fund the infrastructure to build or develop products on your own? This all comes out of your employers profits and hence, off the top of your salary too even if it isn't listed as a deduction on your pay stub.

Hopefully you are starting to realize that by shifting your perception, we really are are all business owners in one form or another. In some cases we are micro-business of a single individual with virtually no business infrastructure while in others we provide more of the business components required to run a business.

Some of us manage our micro-business as a business while others amongst us allow the client to manage our business because we don't believe we have a choice. If you have been making money working for 10, 20 or 30 years, you have been a business owner for that long as well.

If you are struggling as a micro-business owner, chances are you have surrendered control of that aspect of your life to your client. By shifting your perception from that of an employee to that of a micro-business owner, you also shift your perception of who is in control.

Your employer is there to enable you to directly or indirectly make money for them. A good employer/boss will understand that their role is one of being an enabler, to enable you to perform this function and help you resolve issues that come up on accomplishing this goal. That isn't to say that they are there to do your job for you. That is why they hired you in the first place.

If you believe that the boss is the person who pays your salary and all other expenses, it only makes sense that the actual boss in the whole chain is actually the client. After all, isn't that ultimately the source of all money in any business?

So, are we actually using the wrong terminology when we identify the client, the employer and the employee or have we simply lost the right meaning for these terms?

If you are wondering why people are loosing jobs and business are closing in today's economy, look no further than how you define your role and how you see your business. Turn the organizational chart over and put the client at the top and you just might find your business turning around as well.

What's the difference between an employee and a business owner? Why it's who gets to keep the profits of course.

The people we ultimately work for are the people we provide services to. What is your role? We are actually all business owners but we are all customers too because we all have people for whom we work and people who work for us.

Life Coach Michael Milette
Come discover a great life!