After all, most businesses fail, and profits are harder to achieve than one might expect. Still, some people take the plunge, and in many countries more people are working for themselves than at any other time in history. Why do you suppose?
The answer is multi-faceted. There are many cultural and technological factors involved. One major cause of employment independence is the so-called Uber Generation, a series of technologies that make it easy for anyone to turn their car or their home into a moneymaking opportunity, when used as a part time taxi or bed and breakfast. Though some people use these specific apps only for part time work (taking paying customers for rides as the car owner drives to and from work, say) others are making these endeavors full time gigs. These ways of doing business are significant parts of why 1 in 3 Americans now works for himself or herself.
But these aren’t the only reasons why people are working for themselves. After all, Uber and that kind of app are only ways of working. For people to decide that this is the best way to make their money, there have to be some factors which are driving them to the decision. Reed Commercial conducted a poll in which they tried to find out why new franchisers and franchisees first left the traditional workforce in favor of becoming their own bosses. For many of those polled, the decision had a lot to do with their relationship to a previous boss.
Looking at the results of the survey, about ¾ of the respondents reported having friction with a boss, manager, or other employer. When allowed to explain themselves, they used words like “arrogant”, “bullying”, and “uncaring” when describing a previous boss. Almost nobody surveyed had anything good to say about their old bosses, and in many cases it wasn’t just a single boss. These feelings were the result of many jobs in a row, with constant friction between the survey respondent and whoever they happened to be working for at the time.
Those surveyed wanted to experience a career with no boss to make their lives miserable. Whether or not these new self employed people turned out to be better to their new employees than their old bosses were to them, the survey wasn’t able to tell. But the message is clear, it’s common for entrepreneurs to have an independent streak, one that is often inflamed by friction between the entrepreneur and a former boss. Not everybody hates working for someone else. But for those that do have this trait, the strain may be enough to provoke someone to action, and starting a business of their own. For all the risks involved, this one factor alone may make the risk worth it.