Employee Mindset vs. Owner Mindset

Clinical Advice

There are two mindsets among adults who work. You either have an employee mentality or an owner mentality. It is important that you understand the differences between these. If you lack an owner mentality, then you might have difficulties with entrepreneurship, but do not worry, you can change this mindset.

So, what are the differences between these two mindsets?

An employee mindset is based off one of validation. Individuals with an employee mindset base their success off the validation of authority. Individuals with this type of mindset are typically looking to please their boss. They care about what the authoritative figures within their work think about them. They want them to like them!

This unfortunately leads to a mentality of indecisiveness and one that needs to ask permission to do things. Generally speaking (and this is a generalization, do not take this as a blanket statement), nursing is a field where the employee mindset dominates. Historically, nursing has been a profession of subordination. Nursing school almost instils this type of mindset into you. Hell, it is part of the job, you always need an “order” to do something. Think about that for a second… You are literally being ORDERED on what to do. For those out there that naturally have an owner mindset, this will drive you crazy, and it did for me. I couldn’t wait to finish nurse practitioner school…

One problem that exists among the nursing community is that this employee mindset lingers on throughout life. Even if you become a nurse practitioner, it is difficult to shake this mentality. I hear about this all the time over on message boards and Facebook groups. Nurse practitioners are constantly asking “what should I do?” And the answer to that question is for YOU to figure out. One way to do this is by switching your mentality to that of an OWNER or an ENTREPRENEUR.

The owner mindset revolves around obtaining results. The owner mindset takes full responsibility for their actions. They do not ask for permission or what others opinions might be for every little aspect of their life and career. They don’t care about what others think of them (to an extent), they are driven to achieve the goal they have set in their mind and to obtain results!

The owner mindset is that of leadership. Leaders do not take “orders” unless they absolutely must. The owner creates the orders. The owner sees the real world for what it is and shapes and BUILDS their life around this. The owner and entrepreneur begin to see the world differently than that of an employee.

Employees simply do their job, please their employer, and go about their life. Many never question authority. The owner on the other hand is constantly looking for opportunity because they are driven by achieving the goals they set for themselves.

This is the key to developing the owner mindset. You must constantly be looking to obtain results ON YOUR OWN by setting achievable goals. YOU ARE PLEASING NO ONE BUT YOURSELF. You don’t care what others think about the goal you just achieved. You are not pleasing your superiors for a measly gift card at Christmas. Screw that, you are looking at the end goal, you are looking at financial independence!

If you currently have the employee mentality, that is fine. I did at one time too to an extent. Society programs us at a very young age to accept authority without question. It has been like this for thousands of years. It is a way for the elite to control the masses. Well guess what? You are reading the ELITE nurse practitioner, therefore you have the fire starting to burn inside you to break away. Good for you. Everyone has to start somewhere!

You need to break that employee mindset, and you do this in 2 ways:

  1. Question authority.
  2. Set goals that mean nothing to anyone else but YOURSELF!

Far too many people in this country simply accept was it told to them by authority figures. If “so and so” said it, then it must be true! They are in charge! Well guess what? Mr. “so and so” has a personal agenda as well. Therefore, you always need to be constantly asking yourself “why?”

Once you start doing this, you will see the amount of BS in this world. You will realize that Mr. “so and so” is actually completely full of it and they are doing nothing more than pursuing their own agenda to achieve their own GOALS. Well, it sounds like Mr. “so and so” has the owner mentality doesn’t it?

You should also ask “why?” when it comes to certain processes within the world.

For example: Why do I need to chart this way? Why do I have to double and triple chart all this meaningless information? Because the insurance companies tell me to do so? I have to have 3 elements in my HPI so I can get paid a certain way? Why?

Well guess what folks, there is no logical answer to answer those questions, which is one of the reasons I was led down the path of opening cash only niche practices. It increases my efficiency because I do not have to chart meaningless nonsense… This helps me achieve my goals, not those of others.

Do you see what happens when you start asking “why?” It shifts your mindset into that of an owner and entrepreneur. This is CRITICAL to your success if you are serious about breaking free.

You also need to start setting goals for yourself. Remember, you, and only YOU, are accountable for achieving that goal. You are not pleasing administration; you are doing this to please yourself. You will do whatever it takes (within the law) to achieve that goal. That is what keeps that fire ignited in the soul of an entrepreneur!

My goal is financial independence. I want to retire in 10 years. I am doing whatever I can do NOW, so I can achieve that goal. Working for others will not help me achieve that goal, it just won’t… I realized this a few years ago.

The employee mindset is one of illusion: work hard until you are 65 and then enjoy 10-15 more years of declining health! Woohoo!

The owner mindset is one of achievement and realism: work your ass off for 10 years building multiple side businesses and generating multiple streams of passive income so you can sit back and enjoy the fruits of your labor for 30 years while you are still in good health! Hell yes!

Which sounds better? I certainly hope the goal of the owner’s mindset does to you.

Switch your mentality to that of an owner and begin to see how your life changes for the better. I promise you, if you do this, the skies the limit!

6 Responses

  1. I found your moments about owner mindset vs employee mindset to be so accurate ! I am thinking about starting my own practice after twenty five years of professional disrespect, while I provided excellent care to large numbers of my own primary care patients, as well as taking care of the call backs, following up on test results, and for all the physicians in our practice.
    Enough is enough! Thanks you for motivating me to make the transition to an owner mindset.

    1. You bet Cathy! It is time to earn what you deserve! The only way to do so as an NP is starting your own practice. I wish you the best of luck. Feel free to ask any questions here or over on the Facebook Group!

  2. wondering how many months or weeks you would give an employer when giving your resignation. been working with most of the same clients for 6 years. The original company was purchased by a new company one year ago. The new owners have been fair and have actually helped the patients and employees in a few ways so this is not the reason I am leaving.

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