Andy’s Newspaper column archive

Title: What if you owned a company and it was the government? ©

This is a big election year for Nye County but first something about jobs. You probably have an opinion of working for someone who owns a company. It may involve an appreciation of having a job with the company, working at something you enjoy and even looking at it as a stepping stone to something better.

There are many kinds of companies: Natural Person, Sole Proprietorship, Sub Chapter S Corporation, Partnership, Corporation, Limited Liability, Non- Profit, Shell Corporation and more with variations. Each of these have a different impact or value to the enterprise. As an example, doing business as a natural person has some advantage. You could do many different businesses and you would only need to use one name to represent all those activities such as bicycle repair, Grocery store owner, Tree trimmer, Tire Service, Tax Preparer, to name a few. The drawback may be liability since all your personal assets would be at risk. Nevada Statutes provide some

different rules for doing business as natural persons as opposed to using a fictitious business name. Using a fictitious name means you have to register the name with the County and the State. It provides public notice about the company and a way to contact the company on legal matters through a Resident Agent. This is a person authorized to accept correspondence on behalf of the company and is supposed to be accessible during normal business hours. Natural Persons are exempt.

Going in to your own business is complicated in Nevada. They want to know everything about you from your dress or pants size down to your business location. If you think I’m kidding go to the Town of Pahrump office and ask for a business license package, approximately ten pages. One item I found missing was the question, are you competent to do the work?

You may look at the business owner as being rich. I mean, look at all the money they charge for stuff. It is the fool who thinks every business owner is a money hungry leach. Some may see the owner of the business as being independent, free to make his own hours, dictating to the employees. In some cases that could be true and in many cases it may be circumstances that dictate how a company is run. Now maybe you would take on all of this and more, including risking your life savings to start the business. You as an employee can always find another job but the owner can’t always do that They are looked upon as not having the motivation that workers have.

In my experience former business owners, having gone thru the experience of ownership, have more respect for another persons business and are excellent employees. In California, during the 1970's a Korean man, Jay Kim, who owned an engineering company was elected to the House of Representatives. I visited with him several months after he took office. He related his experiences of foregoing his pay, having to find the money to make payroll each week, keeping contracts going and dealing with government. Once elected it was a different picture.

Government entities were literally throwing money at him as an elected Congressman and demanding he spend the money. He went public and was eventually driven out of office by the big government spenders and they bankrupted his company. He only wanted to do what was right.

Many business owners, 80 percent statistically, don’t make it past the first few years of operation. What if you owned a business. What would you expect of your employees. Would you expect them to focus on the work at hand? Expect them to provide good service to your customers? What would you do if they refused to follow your directions, in effect to be insubordinate, or to have them telling you what hours they would work, and even when they would take time off regardless of the needs of the business.

Paramount in my mind has always been the integrity of any business I either owned or one where I was employed. Now what if you were the employee? Would you think it appropriate to act in opposition to the person who has risked everything for the business that is providing a job for you? Shame, shame on you if that is your attitude. You do not deserve to work there and the truth be known, it isn’t good for you either. If you are that unhappy, go find another job. You will never feel good about work if you don’t. Always, always work for someone you like and who likes you. That is one road to fulfilling your life.

Now this was all about company ownership. In fact there is one company I left out. When I refer to you as an employee, that is incorrect. You are, in my opinion, doing business as a natural person, free to negotiate your value with the company. Free to transfer your company, you personally, to make another deal somewhere else. You are a business. This is especially important if your work is more beneficial to the company both in financial terms and in attitude towards the company.

In this election year it may be time to assess whether or not the business of government, in which you are the owner, maybe it needs an overhaul. It may be time for more transparency in the machinations of our government and the people in it from behind the scenes. Really, pay attention to this business and decide what you really want. In an election year you can vote for good business practices and demand accountability along with transparency. We are the government, it’s our company. As Thomas Jefferson said. “I think myself that we have more machinery of government than is necessary, too many parasites living on the labor of the industrious.”

Andrew Alberti Jr