Having time off for vacation is a great job benefit however my struggle was feeling as if my business would lose traction moving forward.



It was not until my business was in a postion to glide that I felt comfortable to take time off .

Working for yourself as an entrepreneur has its benefits and drawbacks at the same time. Sure, it’s nice being your own boss and calling the shots because you’re the president/owner. Keep in mind, that your never truly one hundred percent your own boss. The reason I say this is because if you’re not accomplishing some task, purpose or product that your customer desires, then you won’t be in business very long.






It’s easy when applying to work for someone else when you take a look at their benefit package offered. Such benefits may include healthcare, dental, 401K programs and paid vacation. As an owner, I’ve made sure that each of these benefits was addressed in my own company. However, even today there is still one benefit in which this owner struggles with each year. This is the issue of “paid vacation.” Let’s set the stage for why this is my challenge. Many years ago, in 1996 when I started my trucking company, I had to begin from the very bottom and work up from there. I worked diligently to grow over the years. When you’re trying to start from zero, taking time off is not something that comes to your mind to quickly. Even as you work to get ahead, as a business owner you realize the true monetary cost a business must endure when you take time off. When you are an employee for someone else, you don’t get to see how this impacts the profitability of the company that you work for. Most times, employees are anxious to take their due vacation time and will receive their regular salary during their chosen time off. When you work for yourself, you not only spend money during the vacation period but there is no money coming in to cover fixed expenses that don’t go away just because you took time off. This is a great impact upon your business profits.


For me, where I struggle with time off is that I know and remember how hard it was to get ahead in my business. This plays out in the back of my mind, even today. Let’s face it and I’m admitting that taking time off isn’t easy for me. This is not a monetary issue, however a mental issue on my part. Fortunately, my wife of 26 years knows me well enough by now and encourages me to take needed time off now and then. Years ago, when my wife dispatched the five trucks we had running, she informed me when I came back in at the end of the week that I “WOULD” be taking off the next week as we were going on vacation. She had worked out all the arrangements ahead of time without my knowing. We ended up enjoying a great trip and I was relaxed and rejuvenated when I returned back to work. Throughout the years, when I do take vacation, I’m always glad I did.

I can chill but it does not come natural.

I have had many discussions with my father in law in regards to this subject. He grew up poor on a farm and worked very hard to become a successful executive throughout his career. He is retired now and living a great life. My mother in law had to nudge him as well to take time off during those busy years in his career. I think my wife must have been paying close attention during those years at home.


It’s important when developing your business plan to include time off. This is much needed to restore our minds and bodies so that we can be our best at home and work.





                 At the end of the day , vacation time is an important job benefit.





Comments (2)

Henry Albert

Henry Albert is the owner of Albert Transport, Inc., based in Statesville, NC. Before participating in the "Slice of Life" program, Albert drove a 2001 Freightliner Century Class S/Tâ„¢, and will use his Cascadia for general freight and a dry van trailer. Albert, who has been a trucker since 1983, was recognized by Overdrive as its 2007 Trucker of the Year.

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Very good article, I started my small business in 1995, it is very hard to take time off for the reasons you mentioned. My Father was also a small business owner, I recall one year we took a month long vacation cross country trip, took about a year to recover the business from that trip.

June 20, 2015 20:35:39 PM

Being an owner operator leased to a company makes it much easier to take time off in some aspects. What I have watched owner operators do though is not set money aside for a vacation as they are to used to the "paid vacation" and we do not have that luxury.

June 20, 2015 7:48:55 AM