You Are Not the Boss

You Are Not the Boss

You may own the space and you might be legally tied to the outcome of your business. You may have the title CEO or Director or whatever fancy title you’ve given yourself or been entrusted with, but don’t fool yourself. You are not the boss.

There’s always somebody more important than you. There’s always somebody you serve. Of course, you can choose to serve yourself if you want, but that’s not very sustainable and it’s not very fulfilling.

Ultimately I believe you serve others, probably your customers, probably your team, probably community partners.

The sooner you recognize that this isn’t about you, that it’s about them, whoever “they” are, you’ll change your attitude and your work will get better. Stop giving a shit if people will like it. Only care if you are in service to the people you seek to serve.

If you’re curious to find out who you’re actually serving most of the time, or whether or not you’re mostly serving yourself, try out this quick test. In the last week, how many days were primarily devoted to one of the following:

  1. Increasing your income or keeping your job (yourself)
  2. Doing something your investors or boss wanted whether it was important or not (your authorities)
  3. Watching Netflix, getting wasted, or other leisure activities (yourself, but also laziness)
  4. Doing something specific that made somebody else’s life better because you wanted to (them)

You get to choose which you want to do, but the more you pick number 4 the more happy, successful, and good looking you’ll be. Okay, well, maybe not good looking, but you’ll probably like that person in the mirror more so it’s basically the same.

The whole point is that you aren’t the boss. You never have been. Your boss isn’t even the boss. They are the boss, those people out there in the community who just want somebody to give a damn about them and make their life a little more awesome.

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Ryan Chatterton

Ryan is the founder of Coworking Insights, a coworking media platform focused on delivering unique and in-depth insights for coworking founders and their teams. He’s the Marketing Director at Habu, a quickly growing coworking management platform that is simple, fast, and intuitive for managing recurring billing, bookings, and other admin tasks. Formerly with Impact Hub and PARISOMA, Ryan now has over 4 years of combined experience in a variety of roles in the coworking industry, including marketing, events, operations, sales, software, and partnerships. He’s a digital nomad and a lover of wine and tacos. Follow Ryan's personal blog at

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