Why We Do Anything
Vocation, Altruism, and Avocation.
Each of the three reasons have unique sets of rules.
Letís start with vocation.
Vocation is oneís business and work life. Business
plays by the rules of commerce. Business exists in a free society
to profit by filling a need. Profit, preservation of capital, and
growth are essential for success in business. Compromise any of
those and you fail. Achieve all three and you succeed.
My first serious entry to the world of business was
in 1971. I was 21 years old when I founded
Moss Hill Natural Foods. Zeal and
passion for the enterprise alone were not enough. I lacked real
world business knowledge and experience. At the time, I naively
thought that because I enjoyed natural foods that otherís
would share my interest and a profitable business could be made by
providing such foods in a local retail store. 6 years later I was
proved wrong. My initial desire to share the knowledge and
rewards I enjoyed from eating natural whole foods was actually more
of a desire to help people. (Perhaps it should have been more
charity or ministry than business)
Had I invested the money used to found Moss Hill into
a business making chocolate chip cookies with lots of butter and
sugar I could have been Mrs. Fields today! But NO! I tried to sell
products that people didnít really want.
Avocation is what one does for pleasure and
recreation such as with a hobby. Avocation is subsidized by the
profits from oneís vocation. Fund and enjoy your avocation for
sybaritic pleasure in pursuit of happiness as we all should.
My father-in-law Frank Krupp, was expert at wood
working. He enjoyed making furniture and childrenís toys in his
garage wood working shop. That was his passion. I still have the
wooden train set he made for my son, Justin. Frank made book
shelves, chests, and tables that are in our family to this day. His
friends often encouraged him to sell his toys and furniture at local
flea markets. Frank bought a booth at the flea market. He didnít
sell much, and was discouraged. Wood working was his hobby that he
did for his own pleasure. Had he determined to make it a business,
he should have done market analysis, determine demand, create
products to meet the demand, and outsource production for lowest
cost. Thatís the business model. For Frank, wood working
was his hobby.
When I became seriously involved with
church, I watched ministries try to operate like businesses.
Churches were selling books and tapes as a business enterprise.
Pastors enjoyed salaries greater than those of the average
parishioner. The motive for ministry became lost in motive for
for ministry should be given freely as a charitable offering (gleaned from rewards of
oneís vocation/business). I watched Jim and Tammy Baker create ill
fated businesses, theme parks, condos, sell books and tapes,
ultimately to the demise of their ministry. Sadly there were
many others that similarly got caught up in profit making at the
expense of their ministry.
Charity, giving, ministry, are to be funded from
the profits of oneís vocation and freely given without expectation
Vocation/Business: Make money to fund avocation and
Avocation: Itís a hobby! Fund your hobby because
doing so is personally rewarding.
Altruism: Contribute and serve worthy causes giving freely
with no expectation of repayment nor reward.