24-7/365 No 9 to 5 For Entrepreneurs

While I was driving to work at 6:30am to plow snow out of the parking lot of my business, I heard a radio commercial about flipping houses. “This is the business for you,” it said. “Being your own boss is the way to life’s riches and great success.” It made me stop and ponder my career choices. I had never considered flipping houses.

I am the boss of several successful small businesses, but have I found my way to life’s riches and great success? By my second swipe across the parking lot with the snow plow, I was beginning to give more thought to flipping houses.

Being the boss certainly has its perks, but more often than not when something needs done, the buck stops here. Being the boss doesn’t mean you can come to work and go home when you please… sometimes I think you never get to go home. My responsibilities are there 24-7/365.

Growing up, my family had a produce business in the strip district. I went from a weekend/after school and summer employee to the boss because of a family illness. Even back in the days of running my family’s business everyone got to go home but the boss. One early Christmas morning, before the kids awoke to open presents, a customer called wanting me to make a delivery! To say my wife was not happy would be an understatement.

Early in life, I worked at Burger Chef flipping hamburgers, and at Beverly Pharmacy delivering prescriptions and had bosses. I really liked those folks and took orders from them and respected them. But, this old dog has been playing the boss since the days my family asked me to run the business.

For many years, I learned the hard way (old school) by making mistakes, fixing mistakes, and sometimes paying the price or begging forgiveness. There was the right way, the wrong way, and David’s way (most of the time David’s way was the right way because I was the boss, not necessarily because it was correct).

Being the boss bordered on being royalty, because I began to use the collective “we.” “We” would fix a problem as soon as possible. “We” would make the deal work, and “we” would finish projects when everyone went home.

Well, back to flipping houses, I am not a fan of real estate’s terrible T’s (toilets, tenants and trash). I can swing a hammer. I am not afraid of electricity, but I really cannot do plumbing; it makes me swear, and it’s just not a pretty sight. I like people, but will I like them at 3am when something breaks and “we” have to get out of bed and fix it? Who’s the boss, then? There’s also the matter of the trash. Have you ever remodeled a room in your house? The amount of construction debris is unbelievable. You need dumpsters and green bags out the wazoo. “We” would have to order them, fill them, and pay to have them hauled away. Could I handle toilets, tenants and trash 24-7/365?

“Being your own boss is the way to life’s riches and great success.” I thought about that again. As a financial planner, I work for my clients. Technically, they are my bosses. I made another pass with the plow and realized I liked being my own boss even if it meant working for other people. For those of you who decide to try flipping or any other business, I wish you great success, but get ready to be there 24-7/365.

David Maniet owns Maniet Financial Services Network, a full service independent financial advisory firm and several small businesses in the Pittsburgh area. Visit MFSN on the Web at www.maniet.com, email info@maniet.com or call 412-341-0800 or Toll free 866-4-MANIET to learn more about the products and services offered. MFSN is located in the Murovich Building at 1653 McFarland Road Pittsburgh, PA 15216. Securities and advisory services offered through TRIAD ADVISORS, Inc. Member FINRA & SIPC