We recently ran a poll on our Facebook page, asking people what their motivation would be for starting their own business. The response was great; nearly 50 people took part, and the results were very interesting indeed.
Despite the headline, ‘make lots of money’ was a reason selected by only 4 people, even though they could vote for more than one thing. What came top was ‘to be happy’, closely followed by ‘be in control of my own career’. Interestingly, we originally asked the question of students, then opened it up to business owners, but the responses were the same.
There is no doubt that being able to control your career is an important consideration, especially when when jobs are hard to come by, and few of us have a job for life any more.
I wonder if the results would have been the same, however, if this question had been asked in the ’80s? Perhaps in that brash, confident decade, making money would have been rated higher (remember the movie Wall Street?) But maybe it’s these very images that make people wary of admitting that they are motivated by money.
I’m certainly not surprised that people want to be happy, nor that they want to control their career. I am a little surprised that making money doesn’t come higher up though. After all, if you don’t make any money, your business will not succeed.
And if you accept that you need to make some money, why should your ambition not want be ‘to make a lot of money’? When all is said and done, it’s what you can do with the money that will make you (and the people you can support/employ/help/educate with that money) happy, after all.