Reclaiming Control in Entrepreneurship

Breaking Free from Slavery in Entrepreneurship

Ben Mukoma

4/4/20243 min read

Reclaiming Control in Entrepreneurship

I love Mondays. Since June 2023, I decided that Kenyan Grafik would be closed on Mondays. Every new engagement we had, I ensured I told the client that. My clients, however, work Mondays. They just don't get any work done by us. No meetings, no research, no strategy, no design, no emails... Nothing by and from us.

What do we do on Mondays? Well, I spend it with my wife and daughter. We watch movies, play and tell stories. Recently we watched Leo, the animation. If you want to have a good laugh, go try it out! but I digress... The rest of the people under the Kenyan Grafik do what they want too. Some run errands, some sleep. I care less. It is their off day. It seems weird, but it is a decision that I made and stand by. This is how I am structuring my entrepreneurship journey and the careers of those who work with and for me and the companies I hold (and will ever hold).

You see, entrepreneurship, often depicted as a ticket to freedom and autonomy, can sometimes feel more like a one-way ticket to slavery. The relentless demands of running a business can turn even the most passionate entrepreneur into a weary taskmaster.

But here's the kicker: this sense of bondage is usually self-imposed. By recognizing the source of this perceived slavery and taking proactive steps to reclaim control, entrepreneurs can break free from its grip and unleash the full potential of their endeavors.

  1. Owning Your Time, Owning Your Freedom

Entrepreneurs, in theory, have the freedom to set their own schedules. Yet, many find themselves shackled by overcommitment and self-imposed deadlines. It's time to take back control. By mastering time management and prioritizing tasks effectively, entrepreneurs can regain sovereignty over their schedules and strike a healthier work-life balance.

We found proposals and pitches take too much time, unnecessarily - we typically don't respond to RFPs and RFQs. We also never participate in 'free work' like design competitions. Instead, we work with clients who know what they want and see as a valuable support towards their brand building journey.

  1. Shifting from Subordinate to Leader

In entrepreneurship, there's no boss breathing down your neck, but the weight of responsibilities and financial pressures can feel suffocating. Here's the truth: you're the boss now. Embrace it. Rather than feeling enslaved by demands, see yourself as the captain steering the ship. With strategic decision-making, entrepreneurs can revel in the autonomy that comes with business ownership.

Set the times you will communicate. Have proper planning. Set realistic deadlines and communicate them with your client.

  1. Choosing Solutions over Excuses

Yes, entrepreneurship is rife with challenges – financial strains, personnel dilemmas, you name it. But wallowing in victimhood only tightens the chains of enslavement. It's time for a paradigm shift. Take charge of your circumstances.

Seek solutions. Invest in resources, refine strategies, nurture a positive company culture. Proactive measures are the keys to unlocking the shackles of perceived slavery.

Conclusion: Embrace Your Freedom

Entrepreneurship isn't a prison sentence – it's a journey of boundless possibilities. The idea of being enslaved by your business is a mindset, not a reality. Take hold of your agency, of your company, and of your dream. With a mindset geared towards solutions, entrepreneurs can turn their businesses into vehicles of freedom and fulfillment.

So, cheers to Mondays – a day for relaxation, rejuvenation, and recalibration. Because in the journey of entrepreneurship, sometimes the best way forward is to take a step back and prioritize what truly matters most for your clients, team and your own life.

Since we decided not to work Mondays, we have had more creative flow on the days we work (Tuesday to Sat noon). We have closed projects faster. We have released more content to the world. We are more satisfied with work. And our non-work areas (personal, family, church, social, etc) are more healthy. Find your own system that works - this just works for us.

Go on, break free from the chains, reclaim your autonomy, and embrace the exhilarating journey of entrepreneurship.

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