Modern society tends to hold a grudge against the entrepreneurs of the world, slapping early 20th century stereotypes on them ranging from robber baron to fat cat to the little Monopoly guy. But society owes a lot to entrepreneurs because they are the people who are willing to take the risks that help society move forward.
And those risks are huge. There’s a lot of financial risk in starting a business, and entrepreneurs can lose money in a variety of ways:
- someone could injure themselves at your place of business
- someone could steal from your business
- the government could increase your costs of doing business
- someone could lie about your business
Entrepreneurial risks involve more than just possibly losing the start-up money put into the business. And without people willing to risk these problems and hardships, we wouldn’t have the innovations and time- and effort-saving devices we enjoy today.
One of the big lessons in Cost Benefit Jr. is that envy can be prevented when we recognize that visible benefits often come with hidden costs. Entrepreneurs all pay costs that are largely hidden to us. When they succeed financially, rather than feeling envious, we should remember the costs they’ve already paid.