When You Have to Work for Free

Nobody pays you to start your own business.

Your time is your biggest investment in your business. I’ve seen many entrepreneurs work for months without being paid — which also opens the question to, how long should you work for free?

Nobody pays me to write my blogs. Nobody paid me to start our YouTube show.

People don’t pay you to prove your concept. A company doesn’t pay you to attend a job interview. That’s why it’s not uncalled for to be working for free to build and operate your business when starting out.

When it comes to a physical product based business, people won’t open their wallets for something new if they’re fine with what’s already out there, or if it’s inconvenient to purchase yours, or if they can’t see your value or trust you yet. For example, opening a tea shop had Daniel Lewis giving free samples to the community for months, before selling anything.

Nobody is going to work harder than you on building your business. That’s why I think you have to put in many unpaid hours, you can’t expect anyone else to step up and be as committed to your project (especially long term).

What are your thoughts on working for free, especially as a founder or being part of a startup? We made a video about it, and I’d love your thoughts on it below!

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