John was 53 when the bad news hit. His company was cutting costs and his department was being downsized. Since joining the company ten years earlier, he had worked his way up to a solid position in middle management with a decent salary and great benefits. Now, he was out of a job.
Having spent his entire adult life in corporate positions, he knew he could go job hunting. But this was the fifth time he’d had a “secure ” position shot out from under him, whether through downsizing, restructuring or other reorganization, and with a wife and two teenagers to clothe and feed, he wondered where his next income would come from.
Across the country and around the world, many people face this dilemma every year. In the US alone, every month, about 1 million Americans go through some type of job change or loss.
The Solution… The Great Migration
According to a US-based research firm Decipher, 72% of all adult Americans would rather work for themselves than for another company, and 67% think about quitting their jobs “regularly” or “constantly”. An increasing number of people are doing more than thinking about starting a home business; they’re doing it.
And this phenomenon is not just happening in America, it is sweeping across the world, including Singapore and many developing countries!
One 33 year old man quit the intensely competitive grind as a high-tech corporate worker in Manhattan to build his own internet marketing business in early 2007. Last month, while he was out of the country visiting friends and family, his business earned him $58,000.
A 40 year old woman in Shanghai lost her stressful corporate marketing job when her company closed down. Rather than dust off her resume, she formed her own online retailing company with a few friends. Today, 3 years later, her annual earnings have exceeded her former salary. Even better, she controls her own hours, works with clients she chooses and spends her days in her home office with a view of the ocean.
For another woman in Singapore, a schoolteacher and a mom in her early 30s, it didn’t take an external crisis to make her rethink her career. She was doing fine in her job and loved the work – but had hardly any time for her 3 kids. She invested in an online education franchise and began working out of her home part-time. Within 1 year, she’d earned back her investment and, like the others, left her old salary in the dust.
It amounts to a massive migration, cutting across all categories of age, ethnicity, income level and skillset, greater in its numbers than anything history ever witnessed, as millions leave the world of corporate employment for the land of business ownership.
The New Job Security
Why are so many people starting their own businesses? There are dozen of answers, and they boil down to these: more security, a more satisfying lifestyle, greater financial opportunity and the opportunity to live a life of greater impact.
The first reason, security, may come as a surprise. Only a generation or two ago, going into business for yourself was considered risky, and the safest route was to get a good job in a large firm. Back in the 1960s and 70s, companies like IBM made “employment for life” the gold standard of job security.
But employment in big firms hit their peak in the 1980s, more than 2 decades ago, and the solidity of the corporate career has been in decline since. Massive layoffs sweeping American industry and the world’s major economies in the last decade have brought the message home: Corporate job security and the “40-year plan” are relics.
Now, working for a traditional corporation has become the risky option. Working for yourself has become the new job security. “If I’m working for someone else, I’m trading time for money, but I’m not building any equity,” says Duncan MacPherson, co-founder of Pareto Systems, a consulting firm. “As an entrepreneur, I’m the master of my own destiny.”
A Better Lifestyle
With each passing year around the world, millions of men and women leave established, lucrative careers to pursue new opportunities in the booming home business industry. An industry that is now attracting former doctors, lawyers, CEOs, and others seeking independence and financial rewards.
One of the biggest reasons for the self-owned business boom is that people love the benefits of working for themselves and enjoy the freedom they gain from designing their own prosperity. No more commute to work and no more boss. You get to choose when you work, how you work and with whom you work. Best of all, you don’t have to make the agonizing choice between time for family and time for business.
The reason people start their own businesses or become entrepreneurs is because they want flexibility and greater career satisfaction. And because of technology, it’s never been easier to go out there and go after your dreams.
Email, cheap teleconferencing and a new generation of Web tools make it possible to run a fully competitive business from a home desktop. As a home based businessperson, you can expand your business to Los Angeles, Washington, Beijing, Hong Kong, London and Singapore – and still make the soccer game.
People need more options to help them provide for their families, and the ability to work from home is an essential means of achieving that goal. You will run your own business, make your own decisions… and that means you can work from home.
Greater Financial Opportunity
There is far greater opportunity to make money by building your own business than by working for someone else’s. There was an implicit trade-off in the 40-year plan. Working for a firm typically meant there was a fixed ceiling to the wages one might earn, but the benefits and job security were worth it. Now that the benefits and job security (half of the equation) are evaporating, you should ask yourself, why settle for that arbitrary income ceiling?
When you own a home based business, you receive tax breaks from the government. An employee simply does not have such privileges!
In his book CASHFLOW Quadrant, Robert Kiyosaki explains there are very different characteristics involved in being an employee versus owning one’s own business – and throughout history, most people who have achieved financial independence have been business owners.
“Many people fail to become rich,” Kiyosaki says, “because they value a steady paycheck rather than going through the learning process of becoming financially smarter. The No.1 thing people can do to increase their wealth is to start a part-time business.”
Donald Trump, who joined Kiyosaki to co-author Why We Want You To Be Rich, put it this way: “Don’t depend on anyone but yourself for providing financial security.”
When you’re in business for yourself, you write your own history, you write your own success story, you write your own legacy and most important, you write your own paycheck. Being in business for yourself gives you the opportunity to work your heart out for something you love. A home based business is a great way to start.