More than ever, Work/Life balance has become the key phrase for employees and employers alike. Stressful work hours and high demands on employees have increased along with family and personal obligations. For that reason, many skilled professionals are choosing to leave the traditional workforce to start their own businesses. This ability to be in charge of their own schedule and projects is attractive for a number of reasons. Let’s take a closer look at work/life balance and potentially striking out on your own.
What is the Gig Economy?
The gig economy has been around a long time, but it surged after the recession and recovery about 10 years ago. Many professionals decided not to return to the traditional workforce. Instead, they struck out on their own and became independent contractors and freelancers.
What is your fallback plan?
Before you decide if you want to work for yourself, you’ll need to look at your current situation. What needs do you have financially? What would you do if the short term work didn’t pan out like you expected? Of course, there is also some wisdom to throwing caution to the wind and just giving it a try.
Can you afford to quit your job?
Many people will start with side hustles before they decide to fully quit their job. This can allow you to get your feet wet as a freelancer but still offer the stability and security of your full time job. Once you begin to build a client base, you can re-evaluate and take the plunge.
What are the long term goals?
By having a more flexible career, what do you hope to gain from it in the long term? Are you looking for more freedom to choose your own schedule and work on your own terms? Is striking out on your own the only way to do that? There may be ways to continue to work in the traditional job market without giving up your flexibility.
How can you build your brand?
Of course, going out on your own also means you’re responsible for finding your own clients and building relationships. This starts with marketing, and in today’s connected work, marketing is reliant on social media. So how can you build your brand to sell your skills to your target audience? Start with a website, blog, and social networking pages and build from there.
Can you have the best of both worlds?
Freelancing isn’t the only way to have more control over your career and work/life balance. Working with an employment agency to take on short-term projects and assignments can keep you busy while giving you the flexibility you want and need.
If you’re trying to determine the advantages, and disadvantages, of striking out on your own, consult with the experts at VincentBenjamin. Our Phoenix-based recruiting, consulting and staffing agency can work with you to help you understand the current flexible work landscape and what to expect in 2017.
Written by: Laura M. LaVoie
Laura M. LaVoie is full-time freelance writer specializing in recruiting, employment, resume writing, interviewing, and management. Prior to transitioning her career in 2012, she spent 15 years as a recruiter in the temporary staffing industry focusing on engineering, sales, administrative support, and more. As a blogger, she creates quality content to track changes and trends for upscale, leading recruiting firms like VincentBenjamin.