For a good number of people, life is comprised of a slavish existence, where all they do is live to work. Working for someone else’s dream and having little time to spend the ever diminishing relative rewards. The rewards that the industrialised world offers, for essentially exchanging your freedom, your life, to be little more than an interchangeable cog in their ‘machine’.
Many predictions indicate, that within 5-7 years more than 50% of the working population in developed countries (a strange term, but one that is universally used) will be self-employed. That doesn’t mean they will all be entrepreneurs, or all building multi-million £/$ etc businesses. Many will be freelancers, doing similar roles to the ones they currently are doing in their paid for employment jobs.
What’s Causing This Change?
Two things are at play, firstly, the industrial machine (no longer making steam engines, now making services) has become so sophisticated at taking every last drop of cost out of the production, that they have realised they can further cut assets (people/humans) and replace them with contracted assets (freelancers). Changing a cog, they own to one they hire, and discard far more easily, all at a lower cost per unit.
Therefore, many people are now finding themselves thrown into redundancy. Ouch, after years of sacrificing their lives to the corporate cause. Many choose to do what they know, but for themselves.
The second is a more positive change, many more people are realising that they have been sold a ‘crock of shit’ and that spending their entire lives being a slave, a replaceable cog, to someone else’s dream, is no longer so enthralling, especially when the barriers to setting up solo are now so low.
Increasingly then, the corporate worker is jumping ship and heading for the lifeboats, to sail off into the paradise of freelancing.
That’s the job done then, leave, do what you know and reap all the rewards, have freedom and happiness.
You guessed it, there’s a catch, well not a catch, more like a caveat. As with making any change, you need to enlist help and learn from others in order to make this transition for the ‘safety zone’ that you have been in, for maybe all of your working life, to now being out in ‘wilds’ of self-employment.
If you plan to do exactly what you did for your previous employer, and simple put a slightly different coat of paint on it, then don’t be too surprised if no one finds that very remarkable, or that your previous employer and/or their competitors, are able to out-manipulate you and steal the show.
Many freelancers find diminishing income, simply because they haven’t dared to be different. As Seth Godin points out in his book the ‘Purple Cow’, if you pass a field of black and white cows, there is nothing remarkable, however, if you pass that same field and one cow is purple, you are going to remark, share and take notice.
More importantly, many haven’t engaged the right help in creating something different.
After all, if you are exchanging a life of slavery, for a life of freedom, why wouldn’t you choose to be different, create your own ‘art’ and leave a legacy.