No Such Thing as Vacation for the Entrepreneur

So you want to be an executive, you say? Managing a business has no weekends. Monday through Sunday, open to close- this is the continuous cycle of being the head honcho or someone with entrepreneurial spirit completely committed to taking ownership of their destiny. As Hillary Clinton says in her latest book—with a plan. It’s not easy; no one ever said it would be. Some say that a vacation is needed- business owners will flat out laugh and climb back into their computer to work on fixing that 10th item on a list of 100. If all those long work hours pay off and all-nighters turn into something great, wasn’t it all worth it? There’s an old saying, “No one knows what you want better than you.” When running a business you do need people to carry out various tasks. You want to create jobs for others and you want to see if you can create a replica of yourself. After all, you’re not an octopus with eight arms. You want to trust the people around you to make decisions, and that might be one of the hardest parts of this whole process. Like what most parents do is to hope and see similar traits in their children, so we the entrepreneurs want to see that in our workers. Unfortunately, we don’t always get our way.

So let’s get back to the idea of taking time off. Time off from what? Work? We don’t see what we do as work so we don’t really want a vacation from the things we love to do. I do feel we need time to rest our minds but an entire week! Or two weeks? I am not so sure a long motorcycle ride, baseball game, boat ride or beach day couldn’t do that.

Many say “It’s amazing how rapidly this summer has flown by.” What are they really saying? You will hear many say they didn’t even get to enjoy summer this time around, but it’s not like our clocks were moving faster this year. Maybe we need a vacation of from doing too many different things so time slows down. Now there’s a vacation.

A bit of trivia on vacations- If you have numerous paid vacation days, consider yourself some sort of lottery winner because the citizens of the United States are among the hardest working people on the planet. Did you know that the United States is the only country in the world without a single legally required paid vacation day or holiday? By law, every country in the European Union has at least four weeks of paid vacation. Even our brothers/sisters to the north, Canada, have an average of 10 days.

In the event you are an entrepreneur and decide to take a vacation, don’t beat yourself up over it. Instead, use that time to think about new and innovative ideas that will keep your company fresh and relevant with the times. If anyone asks, you can even call it a “trip of enlightenment.” Times have changed and you can literally be everywhere at once with the aide of technology.

Working long hours and keeping all-nighters is worth it if you live to work –to create, sell, collaborate and discuss your passion day and night. You get to do what you want, when you want and how much you want. I particularly like Jack Dorsey, Founder of Twitter, who did 16 hr work days running two companies.

Dallas Mavericks owner and ABC Shark Tank star, Mark Cuban, once said, “I went seven years without a vacation (from the time I got fired from a job to when I started Micro Solutions). I didn’t even read a fiction book in that time. I was pretty focused.”