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Gen Y Speaks: Many quit their day jobs to be their own boss. I did the opposite

Since a young age, I’ve always had an entrepreneurial mindset and being at university with  other like-minded learners further encouraged me to set various business ideas into motion.

Nevertheless, working as an employee rather than as a business leader required quite a shift in mindset.When running our own business, we were answerable only to each other and we did not have a boss among us. 

But at my new corporate job in the online brokerage firm, I had to constantly remind myself where I fit within the team, and I was not at all familiar with the work processes or the corporate environment.

I found adapting to the office schedule quite challenging at first. The need to stick to working hours is vastly different from the freedom to choose my hours of work I previously enjoyed.

On a personal level after having worked with some of my best mates in my previous job, getting acquainted with my new colleagues was another challenge I had to overcome due to my introverted nature.

We were also in the midst of the pandemic when I joined the company. This meant that I was limited to virtual interactions with colleagues and I could not simply approach people with my many queries.

Thankfully, transitioning into that mindset was inevitable but not particularly tough because of my previous experiences doing internships at other companies. 

I was also very blessed to have had a manager that was willing to take me under her wing and guide me on the right path.

Over time, I’ve come to realise that no matter whether one chooses to be self-employed or work under a boss, we all desire to be trusted and understood, and to feel empowered to take action and make decisions.

After all, everyone shares the same goal in getting the work done. 

HARNESSING MY EXPERIENCE AS A BOSS

There were also several perks to having had experience running a company.

Because of my previous career, I’m often given a seat at the “grown-ups” table so that I can share my ideas directly with the executive team. 

As an employee, it is fulfilling to see these ideas being implemented and yield business results for the company, which validates my past experience.

One example of this includes creating and building the brand’s Telegram channel from the ground up and introducing community engagement initiatives while peppering in my own flavour of content for the younger audiences, using memes to attract eyeballs.

Looking back, I enjoyed the switch to a corporate role not just due to the career stability but mostly the learning opportunities.

Career stability can be a good thing to have, but at the end of the day, everyone has different priorities when it comes to their careers.

For me, social media and community engagement in the digital financial services sector is an exciting field and I’m looking forward to the learning opportunities that come.

Some may not agree with the idea of spending time and money starting a business, and having to call it a day eight months on. 

But I have gained much from this, and in fact, I wish my friends and I started at a younger age. 

I know I wouldn’t be where I am today without the experience and maturity I gained from my previous business.

To me, taking a riskier route into entrepreneurship does not necessarily lead to a bigger pot of gold.

But it could open your eyes to invaluable lessons along the way, which was the case for me, and I don’t regret any of it at all.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Kenzie Ang is the social media and community manager at Moomoo Singapore, an online brokerage firm

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