Jesse Willms Discusses The Pros And Cons Of Entrepreneurship
Canadian entrepreneur Jesse Willms spent the day talking about what entrepreneurship means to him.
Willms is well known in the Internet business community for starting his first business when he was 16 years old and growing it into a successful operation by the time he was 22.
“In retrospect, I'm glad I made the choices I made,” Willms said. “But I do know this life is not for everyone. There are pros and cons to entrepreneurship, just like anything else.”
Willms said one of the biggest advantages to being an entrepreneur is that you are your own boss.
“I can't ever be laid off,” he said. “Nobody can tell me when, where, how or why I have to work. I am in control of my own destiny.”
He said that there is also a great sense of pride that comes from running your own company. And, unlike when you work for someone else, there is no limit to the amount of money you can eventually earn.
“Entrepreneurs don't have to worry about the glass ceiling,” Willms said.
The downside to entrepreneurship, Willms said, is that the benefits make you take on additional risks and responsibilities.
“Look, it's a lot safer to just work for a company and know that every two weeks you are going to get a steady paycheck,” Willms said. “As an entrepreneur you may make a lot of money, but you also may go months without earning a dime no matter how hard you work.”
He noted that even if a company initially makes money for an entrepreneur, it could fall apart on any given day.
“You never know if you are about to lose it all,” Willms said.
He said there is also a great deal of pressure involved in accepting the responsibilities of entrepreneurship.
“You are going to end up employing people,” Willms said. “Those people and their families are going to depend on you for their livelihood. If you make a mistake it could be hard for them to put food on the table and they could lose their homes. Some people can handle that type of pressure and thrive. Some let it eat away at their souls.”
Willms said any aspiring entrepreneur needs to weighs these pros and cons very carefully before they make the decision to get into business for themselves.