LifeThought: Everyone is self-employed; everyone is in sales

Everyone is self-employed; everyone is in sales

Did you know that you are self-employed? Well, whether you know it or not, you are!

You might be thinking, “No, I work for a company and I’m not even a shareholder let alone the owner.”

I want you to read this next sentence, then sit still for a minute and let it seep into the crevices of your brain: It does not matter who signs your paycheck or what company you work for or what your job is at that company; everyone is self-employed and everyone is in sales.

You do not have to own your own company or, literally, be in business for yourself to be “self-employed.” In fact, even if you are retired or are still in school, you are, ultimately, self-employed and your job is to market (sell) who you are and what you are able to do to. You are your own company. You are your own brand. Once you wrap your brain around this idea and embrace it, you will be more successful in building relationships and in creating “job” opportunities.

You might not like the idea of “selling yourself,” but that really is what we do every day. If you have friends, it is because you have shown them something about yourself that makes them want to be around you. If you have a spouse or a very serious “significant other,” it is because there is something about you that makes that person want to be around and, perhaps, spend the rest of their life with you. Whether you are aware of it or did it intentionally, you convinced those people, or that person, that they should choose you out of all of the other people they know. They “bought” you!

If you think of yourself as self-employed while you are at your “job,” you will see the work you do and the company you work for differently. Your “job” is to provide a product or service that meets the needs of, and adds value to, your customer. When your company hired you, they did so because of what you could provide. During the interview process, you convinced (sold) them to use your service instead of that of other candidates. If they fire you, it is because your product or service did not meet their needs or they no longer need your product or service.

Being in “sales” doesn’t mean begging, pleading, or trying to manipulate people into buying something they don’t need. The most successful salespeople know the value of the product or service they provide and try to find a match between what they sell and those people who need, will benefit from, and are looking what they have to offer.

If you will change your thinking about being self-employed, it will change your life. It will change your work and your relationships. You will know the value of who you are and what you have to offer and you will be looking for opportunities to bring value to the world around you. And, most importantly, you will be taking responsibility (ownership) for your present and future success!

This is one of my daily “LifeThoughts” posts. To receive these automatically in your InBox each day, simply subscribe here or by entering your email address in the box below. Also, if you enjoyed this or any of my other posts, I’d be honored if you’d share it with your friends and followers!

Do you agree or disagree with what I’ve written? I’d love to hear your comments!

9 Responses to LifeThought: Everyone is self-employed; everyone is in sales

  1. Somali Chakrabarti January 13, 2014 at 4:39 AM #

    I am really impressed by the way you make use of social media to keep sharing your thoughts on motivation and leadership. There’s a lot to learn from you !


    • Bruce January 13, 2014 at 5:55 AM #

      Thank you, Somali. I appreciate that. Yes, social media has been a great way for me to connect with people all over the world and, not only, let them know about my thoughts and writings but also to learn so much from people I never would have heard of, otherwise.

      All the best,

  2. Kevin January 13, 2014 at 7:12 AM #

    WTG Bruce!! This is right on, I once worked with a very successful small businessman, Larry. Someone asked him “how many salespeople do you have?” Without any hesitation he replied “45”. The man that asked Larry looked confused. He thought the answer was 3 or 4. You see, Larry had 45 employees and knew the truth of your Life Thought.

    Another thing to ponder is this: “Nothing happens until someone sells something!” I have found this to be true with every example outside theology.

    • Bruce January 13, 2014 at 8:41 AM #

      Kevin, thank you for your comment. You’re previous employer was correct! Everyone from the Receptionist, mail clerk, loading dock worker, etc., is in sales. I appreciate you taking the time to read!


  3. Stan January 13, 2014 at 1:36 PM #

    I agree 100% Bruce. I learned this lesson myself back in the late 90s when I was in independent contractor for about 4 years. Even though I do work for a large company now I know that we are all independent contractors and need to act like it to produce the best work product we can and keep ourselves employable, whether we stay with the same company or not. Zig Ziglar taught me many years ago we are all in sales. Great post. I love the information you put out in your tweets and blogs. It seems to be hitting me right where I am at right now. Keep ’em coming.

    • Bruce January 13, 2014 at 2:01 PM #

      Stan, I’m glad you’re enjoying my posts! I appreciate hearing that. I was a huge fan of Zig Ziglar and made him one of my mentors through his books and audiobooks.

      Be well,

  4. Carmen January 13, 2014 at 8:52 PM #

    This is a very helpful and motivating post. I’m sort of a jack of all trades in a sense at the moment and this hits home. I’m still learning and am still a work in progress, but what I’ve learned in the past three years is that one of the best things I can do for myself throughout this selling of myself is to be myself. 🙂

    • Bruce January 13, 2014 at 8:55 PM #

      Carmen, you are absolutely right! Just be yourself because that’s what people want! Believe in who you are and the value you bring to customers or to relationships in general. Always remember you are looking for people who are looking for you and what you have, if it’s not a match, move on. Be sifting and sorting, not begging and pleading.

      Best wishes,

  5. Chidinma August 9, 2014 at 8:06 AM #

    Wow! I actually have never looked at life from that aspect. Thank you so much for sharing. Very insightful.

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