What is the greatest human value?
It is freedom that is the greatest virtue that the human mind can conceive of. Not love, not sacrifice, not kindness, not anything else.
Can love be forced? Can sacrifice be compelled? Can one human show another being true kindness under duress??
While each of these values may be profound and noble in their own right, they are secondary. They are born out of freedom. Only a free being can love another fully. Only the free being can sacrifice willingly.
We see throughout the course of human history, people have been willing to die for their freedom. The American Revolutionary War. The Indian Independence Movement. The Anti-Apartheid Movement. The heroes of these movements were all enamored by the high ideal of freedom, so much so that they were literally willing to lay down their lives for the sake of this ideal.
This profound yearning for freedom, for mastery of one’s own fate is absolutely innate in each one of us. There is not a human being alive that can deny his desire for the freedom to do, think, and be as he pleases (without violating anyone else’s free will, of course…).
It is in this remarkable spirit of freedom that many brave men and women boldly decide to branch out and start their own businesses. Perhaps you have been one of them. You started your consulting firm, your restaurant, your software company, etc. because you wanted that freedom. The freedom to be your own boss and to express yourself through your business.
You had a dream. You had a vision of how you could create value in the world in a way that is totally your own through the services you offer or the products you create. That is praiseworthy. That is utterly human, in the noblest sense of the world.
You set off with great enthusiasm and energy, eager to deliver your unique value to the world.
However, somewhere along the line, perhaps things didn’t go according to plan. Running a business is challenging and can quickly become an all-consuming affair, leaving you with little time to breathe. If you are operating a boutique consulting firm, maybe you are struggling to find clients. Or maybe, despite your deep expertise, you are having trouble competing with the big name consulting firms and the vast resources they have available. If you are operating a small business in another industry, you might also be struggling to compete with the big players in your industry, even if you have something better to offer to consumers. You may be dealing with the difficulties of handling all the various aspects of your business, such as finances, business development, operations, marketing, taxes, and legal issues.
Very quickly, the freedom you were hoping for when you started your business can turn into administrative drivel, endless phone calls, frequent firefighting, and other non-value added activities that demand your attention.
And yet here you are, still fighting for your vision. Whether you are conscious of it or not, the underlying sentiment from the beautiful poem, Invictus, by William Ernest Henley echoes through your mind, pushing you towards the realization of your dream, despite the difficulties and challenges assailing you:
“Out of the night that covers me, Black as the Pit from pole to pole, I thank whatever gods may be, For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance, I have not winced nor cried aloud. Under the bludgeonings of chance, My head is bloody, but unbowed.
Beyond this place of wrath and tears, Looms but the Horror of the shade, And yet the menace of the years... Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.
It matters not how strait the gate, How charged with punishments the scroll, I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.”
From those of us here at Konsälidön, thank you. You create jobs, value, and something unique for the world to experience, and we would like to help you lessen your burden and experience more freedom as you voyage forward on your business mission. We exist because of our belief in small business. We believe that “the little guy” can offer big value to the world. We are creating a robust ecosystem to connect boutique consulting firms and the small and medium-sized businesses they assist.
Through various aspects of our ecosystem, we aim to give boutique consulting firms the economies of scale that large consulting firms enjoy. Small businesses in need of advice and assistance will also benefit tremendously, as they will be able to get the best advice at a price they can afford.