The more I look around me, the more self-employment seems to be the way to go for many people. I’m not sure if this is just my observation or if it’s indeed a global phenomenon, so I’d like discuss it with you.
There are two reasons why self-employment seems to be the way to go:
Many people lose their jobs because of the recent financial crisis. I read many stories about people with high salary who suddenly found themselves out of work and found it difficult to get new jobs. For them, self-employment could be the only way to go because the job market isn’t as good as it was.
Many other people choose self-employment not because of necessity but because of opportunity. They find that self-employment gives them more freedom and flexibility, not to mention the potentially big financial reward they could get.
I am an advocate of self-employment and over time I become more and more convinced because of the stories I hear from people around me. I often hear about those who lose their jobs and how it could take them months to get new jobs, if ever. I imagine that if only more people went through the path of self-employment, I would hear less such stories.
More specifically, here are some reasons why I advocate self-employment:
- Your income source won’t depend on one party
If someone works for a company, his boss could fire him and eliminate his income source. I don’t know about you, but I don’t feel comfortable giving the control of my entire income to someone else. Being self-employed means that nobody can fire you.
- Your income won’t drop to zero if something bad happened
If someone got fired from his work, his income practically dropped to zero. Those who are self-employed won’t experience that. Sure, you might lose clients, but it’s unlikely that you lost all of your clients at once. If something bad happened, it wouldn’t be drastic. Instead of having your income dropped to zero, it would drop gradually and therefore give you time to work on something else.
- You can cut work-related expenses
Since you work on your own, you have more control over the way you work. This often translates to saving on work-related expenses such as transportation costs.
- Your have more control over your time
In most cases, you can arrange your own work time. This flexibility means that it will be easier for you to allocate time for other things in your life.
- Your reward is more proportional to your effort
When you are in a corporate environment, providing twice as much value doesn’t necessarily mean getting twice as much reward. But when you work on your own, that can happen more easily. You contact with the market directly so any extra value you provide is more likely to be rewarded.
- The Internet opens new opportunities
The Internet allows you to deliver your value directly to those who need it without any middleman. In addition, the Internet helps you aggregate potential demand. Let’s say you have a specific skill that only 1 in a million people need. Without the Internet, it will be difficult to find even one client in your local area. But thanks to the Internet, you now have access to over 6000 potential clients. It means that your ability to make a living from that specific skill increases exponentially.
The first and the second reasons are the most important, in my opinion. Self-employment can give you more security. You are less likely to suddenly fall into a deep financial trouble because of lost income.
Of course, there are also negative aspects of self-employment. First of all, it’s not easy to start a self-employment career. It could be difficult to get consistent income in the beginning because of the difficulty to find clients. You might also need to work harder than when you work for a company since you are now on your own.
That being said, I think the freedom and security is still worth it. With the world and the job market becoming more unpredictable, having your destiny in your own hand seems to be the best alternative.
This is just my opinion, of course. I’m interested to hear yours. What do you think?
Photo by mescon