Thinking of starting your own business? I failed miserably, consider yourselves warned.

October 14, 2017

 

 

Running my own business was a tedious affair that eventually went belly up, so was left with no choice but to return to the job market seeking employment in my mid-30s. Attended a few interviews and somehow felt the interviewers were looking down on me for having ran a company which failed. Haven't received any job offers, still on the hunt for a suitable full-time gig.

I estimated that I lost around 300k purely in opportunity costs accrued from not taking up a salaried role during this entire period, which needless to say makes for sufficient dough to buy a humble HDB flat to nicely settle down already.

I realized that once your resume makes mention of you having dabbled in a business venture previously or took up a self-employed vocation such as being a private hire car driver, your standing immediately takes a huge tumble in the eyes of prospective employers;  you are deemed much less employable, ie expect to be profiled within the same category as former bankrupts and ex-convicts.

Why do I say that? Because its true. In their narrow-minded wisdom they expect a former bankrupt to go bankrupt yet again, an ex-convict to inexorably return to a life of crime, a former business owner to forever involve himself in uninspiring enterprises, a private hire car driver to remain a lowly chauffeur all his life.

A few weeks ago, Mediacorp's Channel 8  Frontline program featured 2 former business owners (one in construction, the other in the travel agency trade) who each used to earn millions per year, yet lost their entire fortunes in gambling. Fast forward to the present day, their empires are lost, and they have resorted to becoming taxi drivers in a bid to feed themselves.

I implore you not to be unwittingly enticed by television shows glamorizing the whole run-your-own-company-and-live-your-dreams bullshit, because them program producers are mere happily employed folks who themselves never did once embark on the often tumultuous entrepreneurship route in their lives, yet had the gall to encourage others to take the plunge as far as starting a business from scratch is concerned.

Need I say, current circumstances enshrouding the local job market for employees are looking pretty bad. I clearly recalled a recruiter quizzing me in an obviously condescending tone: "You actually expect a monthly salary 3k???"

I seriously don't know how I am ever going  to properly compete against the younger people and fresh university graduates in today's working society, I really don't. Wish me luck, and learn from my mistakes.

 

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