Which is more stressful: having someone work for you or having to work for someone else? Does it take more effort to have employees do the job you assign them or do you think that having someone looking over your shoulders 8 to 10 hours a day is worse.
I've been in both positions and I think being the boss is a bit more stressful. Why? Because as an employee you expect to be supervised at some point and usually you have a superior breathing down your neck. I think being watched helps me to become more productive and better at what I do.
On the other hand, managers are supposed to delegate but I find that too often,employees slack off and I have to pick up the pieces. In some work environment, the failure of the line employee is the failure of the superior. Some employees cannot be trusted to carry out a task by themselves and the time the superior spends fixing things they could have been doing something else, this is unproductive and stressful.
The owner (entrepreneur) of a small business has the heavies load to carry because they are usually "headcook and bottle washer". They have to take care of all the administrative and financial work plus supervise their staff.
Everything you just said is true. Sometimes though, being just an employee means that the final word is not necessarily yours and too many times there are supervisors who were great employees but lousy managers. Knowing how to delegate authority plus making your employees stakeholders is an art that may not necessarily be learned in Business School.
That's great! I was in federal and local government, private industry and college teaching and it always seemed I had a shadow. Now that I work for myself since retired from government service ... I find it more rewarding and less stressful (cut out the middle men; just me and my clients!)