Job vs Business: Key Differences, Benefits, and The Right Choice

Updated Dec 2, 2022.
Job vs Business

The job vs. business debate never gets old. Everyone, at one point or the other, had to consider which career paths offer the most personal and financial growth opportunities.

Choosing between a job and a business is not always as straightforward. These two have unique advantages and disadvantages that make it tricky to pick a clear winner.

This article will cover the essential differences between a job and a business you should consider before choosing your preferred career path.

Job vs Business: A Comparison

Having a job and running a business comes with unique advantages and disadvantages. The choice of career path depends entirely on the individual's definition of success.

In the present world, your career choice is either getting a job and working for an employer or starting your business and being your own boss.

These two career paths vary from each other. Here are all the job vs business differences you need to know to make an informed decision.

1. Investment

Starting a new business organization requires a huge investment, both in capital and resources, like time devoted to creating and actualizing your business plan.

To own your own business, you need to hire skilled hands and look for a base of operation for your business. All these add to the initial investment for your business.

Top Expenses During the First Year of Business

Looking for a job does not require as much financial investment apart from the one put into getting the highest level of educational qualification. Although you must invest significant time in browsing job search sites and preparing for interviews, it is nothing compared to starting a business.

2. Profit

Your profit margins seem higher when you own a business than when you work on a job, as there is no constraint on your earnings due to the fixed salary cap. Business owners tend to have a higher ROI than individuals with jobs.

The earnings you receive on a job depend on your position, qualification, roles, and responsibilities in an organization, one too many that do not define that of a business owner.

However, it is essential to note that earnings from a job are more reliable than earnings from your business. The profit or loss left after sorting out the operational expenses of your business organization is the business owner’s burden.

The Countries With highest Salaries
Source: Statista

3. Qualifications

Owning and running a business requires no special qualification. You hire the most skilled hands to complement, unlike working on a job where you are required to meet particular requirements for the organization.

Top jobs and in demand skills
Source: Vietnam Times

4. Schedule

Being able to draw up a schedule of your choosing at your comfort is one of the many things starting a business has going for it. There is no pressure from the fixed work routine of your job requirement.

Business owners devote a large chunk of their time to their business needs and get to delegate tasks and responsibilities to their employees when it gets overwhelming. Still, a job's flexibility has standard job hours, depending on your employer.

5. Vision

Business owners are in charge of providing a vision that guides their business operation, which is in sharp contrast to having a job where you operate on your employer's dream. As a business owner, you work to build your own dreams.

Mission Vission Values
Source: CFI

6. Growth

Owning a business allows you to achieve growth in several unique ways as your development is not limited by promotions, as is the case with having a job.

Business owners grow their business by expanding their customer base and securing a better space for their business operations.

On a job, you grow by seeking professional development in terms of further certifications and learning opportunities to make you stand out from other employees and move up the corporate ladder.

Business Owners Do Not Have a 4-year collage Degree

What is a Job?

A job is a part or full-time employment opportunity to earn a contractual amount of money for work done and services rendered to an organization.

For a job, tasks are delegated to you by a member of the organization in a high-ranking position. This individual ultimately monitors your performance on the tasks assigned to you and your overall impact on the organization.

Top 10 Most Highest Paid Occupations In USA
Source: Y-Axis

A job gets you a fixed monthly salary and other remunerations that make the job attractive and is subject to approval by a superior person in the organization's management structure.

Having a job comes with its unique benefits, such as a steady source of income and a platform for you to build and grow yourself to take on much bigger engagements in the future.

So as a job seeker, you should look beyond your present and see the job as an opportunity and part of the learning process to empower yourself for personal growth.

What is a Business?

A business is structured to meet a specific commercial, non-commercial or professional objective. Although you need two or more people working together to achieve a set goal, a business can involve just one person.

Owning a business entity comes with oversight and ultimate control of all activities, but it also opens you up to areas of concern. You create jobs for others.

As a business owner, you are guilty of both the success and failure of the business since you enjoy the profit and loss incurred by your own company. You can lose your company overnight because of wrong decisions or unfavorable business cycles.

How Many Jobs Are Created by Small Buisnesses
Source: Oberlo

Your decisions are critical as your team looks up to you for direction regarding how and what business strategy to take in achieving goals.

One of the many advantages of owning a business is that you have the final say on major decisions, such as choosing who to hire for your organization. You are crucial to the day-to-day running of the business.

Some businesses are non-profit-oriented and have no non-commercial objective. These companies need to generate enough to keep them running as they serve a more significant cause than themselves.

Advantages of Having a Job

A job has unique benefits for a successful employee. Digitization has continued to pave the way for lucrative job opportunities across diverse industries, offering financial security.

Remote Worker Graph
Source: TeamBuilding

1. Steady Income

With a job comes a predetermined salary over a fixed period and other benefits and remunerations such as bonuses and insurance.

The perks of having a job are earning more when you move up the organizational position ladder, as promotions come with significant raises in salary.

A Decent Salary Still Most Important Job Criterion
Source: Statista

2. Offers Means for Growth

Having a job opens opportunities to meet new people and work with a wide range of industry professionals and leaders to develop new skills. Networking plays a significant role in advertising yourself to the job market and harnessing hidden opportunities.

3. Fixed Working Hours

When it comes to the job vs business debate, most people tilt towards having a job as it is less stressful with fewer duties and not too many responsibilities. The working hours on a full-time job offer zero or little flexibility.

The Countries With the Best Work-Life Balance
Source: Statista

4. Added Perks

A job comes with unique perks, whether in a government job or industry. As an employee, you have access to paid holidays, vacations, practical training, and incentives when you meet your set target.

Which Working Benefits Do Millennials Value Most
Source: Statista

5. Less Responsibility

Working on a job has fewer responsibilities for you as an employee than taking the self-employment route. As an employee, your only responsibility is within your job description. Your success depends on your job performance.

With fewer responsibilities, you have ample time to build an excellent work-life balance and prioritize other things outside your business organization.

The Perks of Working From Home
Source: Statista

6. Professional Development

Most jobs offer employees the opportunity to develop professionally at various stages of their careers by investing in their human resources.

Through tuition assistance for their study abroad journey, employers empower employees to pursue higher education to gain more valuable skills.

Many jobs provide relevant training to help develop your skills and fast-track your career. In the long run, professional development opens employees up to more job opportunities and a chance to increase their salary.

Disadvantages of Having a Job

Having a job has its own set of risks, which can make you have doubts about opting for the job option in the position vs business debate.

1. High Competition

With every job opportunity, there is always fierce competition for the chance, and the competition does not end after securing the job.

Even after securing the job, you are still in constant competition for promotion as you are required to put in loads of effort and your very best to guarantee and earn your promotion.

Competition among employees within an organization's structure can be detrimental to the organization if not adequately checked, as misplaced priorities do more bad than good.

Most Competitive Industries
Source: HRDConnect

2. Personal Autonomy

As an employee, all your efforts work at helping someone else achieve their financial goals, be it an organization or the person in charge of the business you operate.

You have no personal autonomy as you are required to seek approval from your superiors before making any decisions.

When working on a job, you might be required to carry out a task that does not resonate with your value system, as you have no direct control over the type of job you are assigned.

Ensure you assess the company and what it stands for before accepting its job offering.

3. Rigid Rules

Every job has its rules and regulations to guide employees' conduct within their job role. Failure to comply with your organization's laid down rules and regulations can result in the termination of one's employment.

Dress code and resumption time are among the rigid rules that every organization issues, and you must conform to them as it is not open for discussion.

4. Office Politics

One of the risks involved in having a job is the occurrence of a political mindset in the office workspace.

Office politics negatively affects any organization it crawls into by targeting such an organization's peace and professional flow.

5. Limited Financial Benefits

A job does not open you up to earn profits outside of your fixed monthly salary despite the business being profit oriented.

The only financial benefit you are open to receiving on a job is annual bonuses and incentives, which depend on your excellent performance.

The Benefits Employees Change Jobs for
Source: Statista

Advantages of Owning a Business

Being a business owner opens you up to making your own decisions and total control over your schedule. Although owning a business might seem challenging as you have more responsibilities to perform, the reward far outweighs the risk involved.

1. Flexibility

Owning your venture opens you up to a range of flexible options as you make all significant decisions, from the number of work hours to how much work to do.

With this, you get to decide your work-life relationship balance, as balancing your time between your work and your personal life helps guarantee true happiness.

2. Experience

Owning a business offers relevant experiences in critical areas such as management, finance, marketing, and human resources, which are handy for much improved professional development.

With all these relevant experiences, you are better empowered when opportunities are outside your business.

You can decide to sell your business and seek a senior position at another company. The entrepreneurial mindset you developed while owning your business will give you an edge in the job market.

3. Authority and Independence

As a business owner, you have full authority and independence at work as you live your dreams. If you have an eye for leadership with a solid business idea, setting up your own business should be the career path you decide.

Being a business owner means you are not accountable to anyone. You have a free hand in making decisions and changes as you deem fit, as you are constantly betting on the most efficient way of going about your business.

4. High Scope for Profit

Having direct access and control over every penny that comes into your business account is one of the perks of being a business owner.

Although you do not earn a fixed salary, you do one better as you decide what to do with the business's profits.

Re-investing a large chunk of the profit is usually the smart move as this opens your business to earn money which ultimately translates to more profits for you.

5. Opportunity to Achieve Your Vision

Owning a business helps you achieve your life goals and aspirations by providing the platform that drives your vision. You can meet your goals by owning and running your own business with a high level of success.

Disadvantages of Owning a Business

Owning a business comes with challenges to be considered before picking sides on the job vs business debate.

1. Funding

One of the first and most significant challenges you might face as an aspiring business owner is securing funds to invest in your business.

Self-employment exposes you to considerable risk at the early stage of your business. One of the top reasons why large and small business ideas fail is a lack of capital.

Reasons Why Startups Fail
Source: Shop Savvy

2. Risk

There are always two sides that characterize owning a business, as you can either earn huge profits if the company is successful or incur losses if the business fails.

Owning your own business opens you up to many risks as you risk losing all your money via investment, time, and effort.

One of the essential entrepreneur characteristics is smart risk management. Entrepreneurs' risk-taking factor is high compared to a job career path.

Top 10 Business Risk Priorities
Source: CRI Group

3. Stress

Owning and running a successful business can be a stressful experience. You are the center of all activities and decisions that characterize your business operations.

Apart from managing your business operations, you also have to deal with managing your employees and making them happy and delivering on the revenue goals.

4. Managing Deadlines and Competition

Diving into any industry opens you up to the significant competition as you constantly battle for a share of the available customers.

Business owners are constantly under immense pressure to seek out innovative ways to drive the attention of potential customers toward their businesses. The pressure of meeting a client's deadline comes with owning your own business.

To be a successful business owner, you need to have the required experience and expertise in your field of specialization to help you navigate the pressure from your competitors.

Job vs Business: What Career Path Should I Choose?

Regarding the job vs business argument, both have unique advantages and disadvantages, and you must extensively consider both before making your informed choice.

Apart from the advantages and disadvantages, you must consider your personal and professional interests and skills to make the right decision. If you feel it is time to join the workforce, you can opt to get a job or be your boss by starting a business.

Learning the difference between these two career paths can determine the most reliable option tailor-made for you.Whatever of the two career paths you decide to stick with, ensure it is the one that gives you the most value and can sustain you for an extended period. Value is beyond monetary terms. You need to be able to live with your decision without regret.

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Martin Luenendonk

Editor at FounderJar

Martin loves entrepreneurship and has helped dozens of entrepreneurs by validating the business idea, finding scalable customer acquisition channels, and building a data-driven organization. During his time working in investment banking, tech startups, and industry-leading companies he gained extensive knowledge in using different software tools to optimize business processes.

This insights and his love for researching SaaS products enables him to provide in-depth, fact-based software reviews to enable software buyers make better decisions.