Will we all be business owners in the future?

Is there any area of business that will be spared massive lay offs? Watch Jeffrey Goldfarb talk to Reynolds Holding about cuts in staff and pay at global law firm Weil Gotshal & Manges

Read about the likelihood of such development in the legal business years ago. So I’m not surprised. It reflects a structural shift in the way we do business.

In a world of neo-liberal policies, to employ or not employ is reduced to mathematical formulas. And in area after area the formulas seem to be stacked against employment. Read somewhere that 2 billion jobs will be lost by the year 2030.

Employment a thing of the past?

Is employing people becoming a thing of the past? Not only in business but in other areas of the economy as well? The same mathematical formula will most likely be applied even to non business sectors such as health care. In order to maximise profits self employed doctors and nurses may very well be the way of the future.

In Britain alone 367,000 people have become self employed since 2008. And you have the same development all over the world.

Many of us already have our own companies so the development suits us. Do however feel sorry for today’s teenagers who have decided to go down the MBA route. The majority of them will not have the opportunity we had of starting their career as employees. They will have to swiftly set up their own company. Needless to say that will put those who don’t have an entrepreneurial mind in a difficult position. Many of them will be building up debt as they scrape along.

Do you think self employment is the way of the future? What sectors could possibly be spared from massive layoffs? Apart from current development, will the world’s population outgrow the number of jobs available? How is education preparing the next generation for self employment? Do you think the future will lead to competition amongst self employed people getting tougher and tougher? 

Video: ReutersTV-You Tube

69 responses

  1. I think that we need to think in a New Way to be able to adapt to the times we live in. We need to think more in network with other companies and make more temporary alliances too.

  2. It's seems like the only way to ensure a career is to going into business for yourself, but I don't think EVERYONE is going to want to be an entrepreneur. After all, those businesses started by entrepreneurial minds will need help running the day to day operations. And you'll find many people are afraid of the taking on the risks that comes with being self-employed. Are there risks? Absolutely! Are there rewards? Absolutely. For some, a pay check is more secure and definite. Limited, but definite.
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  3. Catarina — the law profession is undergoing a seismic change in the U.S. Newly-graduated lawyers can't find jobs, especially if they didn't graduate from a top-10 law school. People think that lawyers are pulling 6-figure salaries when the reality is that the vast majority of lawyers are making under 6 figures. Many are resigned to becoming contract employees — which, if effect, means becoming an entrepreneur. I think the trend is clear that more people are starting their own businesses, many by choice but a lot because they have run out of other options. The only industry that seems to be expanding is health care because of a growing, aging population. If I was starting a career now that's where I'd look for the opportunities.
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  4. The traditional way of working is shifting. It will change the face of what we classify as work. What sectors will be spared? I believe the service industry such as restaurants, resorts etc.will always be in need of good qualified people. It would be difficult to provide or prepare and serve a quality meal or a quality experience without them. There are other areas in the same vain that will be expanding, but I fear not at the pace of the loss in other sectors. Just my thought at the moment. :)
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  5. Family Corporations is the way to go for the future. If we as family units create family businesses than the future will hold brighter then before. Job creativity is the way forward and networking to empower each others financially. It may mean that one or two items or products to trade with in other to give other families to look after other products. This will enhance greater opportunities for everyone and to rule out greed. It is in the best interest of larger population to create more job opportunities. Trade Policies might change in larger degree to embrace and welcome new changes. We policies like equality, justice, and fairness will the way to go for everyone of us. It means that equal opportunities, equal share, and fairness. The present policies may not embrace these principles. I am of a strong opinion that the future will be better if we have all Strategic Planners professionals work together to plan our world for a better place to live in.

  6. It surprised me how many people I met in college that ended up starting their own business right after graduation. I don't know what I exactly expected, but I had always pictured college as a stepping stone to being employed and then I got in to the real world and realized just how many people I knew who were owning their own businesses and employing themselves.
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  7. I think there is another paradigm change taking place. Just like when the industrial revolution took place we now see more people taking charge and working for themselves. In the era of social media and the global economy it is much easier to do now.
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  8. Some grim statistics because as we all know, and a few people have commented, not everyone wants to be an entrepreneur. I think if the trend is less employment, that people worldwide will need to adapt. When Obamacare, actually the unAffordable Care Act was made law in the USA I read something about a group of people seeing an opportunity to hold down their costs: turn their employees into subcontractors. That has a benefit both for the employer who doesn't want the potential health insurance penalty and the outgoing employee who will still be employed, but as a subcontractor. "All great changes are preceded by chaos," Deepak Chopra <= not sure if it holds true for all chaos, which at times seems where we are now.

  9. Things are definitely shifting, I know that when I talk to my son about university my reasons for encouraging him to go have changed. It used to be, go because it's a good way to get a job, now I encourage him to go because its a good way to learn the skills to create his own job. Although owning your own business isn't for everyone, we can't assume that what we understand as self-employment today will be the same in the future. Why wouldn't we form loose collectives and use associations to purchase our benefits, insurance and even financial needs? This is what some professionals do now anyway. We may all end working for ourselves, but it doesn't mean we'll end up working alone. Things are changing, but everything is shifting, not just one aspect.
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  10. I listened to Bi Puranen, future scientists, many years ago. She foresaw these developments. I have, since I heard her, I always thought that the future will consist of people who are self-employed and flexible according to what the market needs. We use our knowledge and skills to what the market actually needs.
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  11. I have always been an entrepreneur and have owned my own business for 20 years. As a mother of 3 girls I have been teaching my girls the importance if being independent and a self starter.. We've just gotten involved with a brand new direct sales company as a way for me to teach them how to build a business from the ground up and make it a sustainable business.. Wish us luck! I think the challenge with the medical field is the extraordinary cost of small practices. Liability insurance is insanely high and makes it challenging for a young doctor starting out to turn a profit on a new business.I've grown up with my "home" doctor so to speak and love the relationship and trust that develops so I would love nothing more than to see medical care go back to what it should be instead of the industrialized medicine we have today.
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  12. Ideally everyone will or should be self employed as this is what any employer would seek to realize in terms of employees accepting responsibility as if they were entrepreneurs.
    Yes there are no longer enough jobs for everyone wanting to work, that is already a fact. Increasingly IT and globalization have destroyed so many jobs that the balance between available jobs and population is off. Yet people tend to find ways to create their own and markets are emerging that take us back to the local economy with much less IT, as usual the human kind finds ways to survive. This will have a killer-effect on most multinationals that do not adept in time.
    Education has always been lagging far behind, this whole system is dysfunctional so I do not expect anything there.
    As to competition between self employed people, this has been there since the beginning of time, if at all it will become much more sociable than inside and between big companies and/or multinationals for sure.

    With more local cultures and entrepreneurs serving the world comes the return of respect as you ca no longer disassociate towards a brand or flag but deal with and between individuals.
    that;s my 2cts.
    have fun.

  13. To have a job and your own business besides is one of the best things to be able to have. Then you will have your secure income but also learn, and hopefully, be able to expand your own business. If you are succesful, hoepfully you can switch more to your own business in future and maybe even leave your employment.

    However, in many countries, some banks and finance institutes insist that you need to have a secure emplolyment in order to be able to be granted a loan for buying an apartment/house.
    The banks are not always very flexible when it comes to grant credits. This is also something to consider when thinking of running your own business. So a mix of employment and business as a start can be a good thing.

  14. With the economy in shambles things are changing. Many employers have cut back and realize that they are able to exist without the extra baggage. I grow up in a time in the US where it was the land of opportunity and you could be entrepreneur if you had a vision. That is what was referred to as the baby boomers. They were creative. The kids today have such a structured life from their parents of what to do to it and when to do that they can't really think on their own, With jobs getting harder to find and people turn to creating their own companies, that will start to flood the market and we will be where we are today. No creativity.
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  15. Self-employment is quickly becoming an emerging trend, though little seems to be done via education programs to train people for that likelihood. Not everyone is a born entrepreneur, but a little extra training on how to be successful as a contract worker could prove very helpful. I know I never imagined myself going down this route, but since I do not want to be a part of a failing education system, I have no other choice but to make my own way, and that way is quite a maze at times.
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  16. Not sure if everyone will be a business for themselves one day for the simple reason that there are people out there who are completely fine working for others. Another aspect which a lot of people have pointed out is that every business needs help with some aspect of their business every once in a while, HR, Legal, Compliance, Auditing, etc. Should everyone start a part time business and is that possible? Sure why not. But I don't think it would be a major or the majority source of income.

  17. I started my own business after getting laid off in 2009. As I had worked in my field for 25+ years, I had not only a lot of experience, but also many contacts in the industry, and so wasn't too difficult to get enough clients to support myself as a small business. I definitely agree that this may be the wave of the future as companies continue to keep hiring at a minimum and workers want more freedom
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  18. I think there is a genetic component to being an entrepreneur. I have one son who immediately struck out on his own developing and running several web businesses (and his college degree is in exercise physiology!). The other, is less of a risk taker and works for a university as a project manager for clinical trials. (His degree is in Hospitality Management). I think entrepreneurship should be part of the curriculum starting in high school.

    I come from a long line of employees, but my husband encouraged me to start my own law firm when I was discontented working in another firm. I couldn't believe that I did it and I had to learn as I went. I started with the law firm of "Me, Myself and I" and eventually ended up with partners and employees.

  19. It's all about the bottom line Catarina. I think reality is fast becoming that (like it or not) self-employment may be the best option for many. It's interesting to watch in the US what is happening with healthcare. Some companies are not hiring simply to avoid the cost of having additional employees. Many companies are only hiring part-timers. They're finding it cheaper to pay the fines than to offer health care. The impact that this is having is huge. Self-employment is becoming not only an option but in some cases the only recourse.
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  20. Unfortunately, there is no safe business. Some business will continue to hire, but staying on the job as the economy changes may not be so easy. Likewise, a self-employed freelancer can have plenty of work one year and the next year may be drier. We all have to stay on our toes. Those who are able to adapt to new circumstances will have the best chances of success.
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  21. I would think that as people become self employed they will be creating an opportunity to employ others also. If they grow large enough, then there could be great employment opportunities available.
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  22. I think that self-employment is definitely a growing trend. Technology is facilitating remote working, and companies are taking advantage of this to downscale and outsource many functions, recognising the potential cost-savings. This is being exacerbated by the high social taxes being levied in many countries – especially Europe – which are saved with outsourcing. For many people, too, having a small company represents a significant saving on income tax, so one can take a lower gross amount to be ahead in net pay. In effect, these governments are encouraging the self-employment trend, too. The law of unintended consequences…

  23. I started out as an employee, but the moment I was able to go into business for myself I did and haven't looked back since. Just hired a recent college grad who decided after just three weeks that she did not like her chosen profession and accepted an offer outstanding for the better part of the past three years.

    She's able to get 100 likes for just about anything she posts to Facebook, an obvious asset in today's business world, particularly for e-commerce and other tech companies.
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  24. Well, small businesses in America is what helped build our economy…and few of those business went BIG. like Walmart, McDonalds…etc.

    I think people are worried for job security, so being your own boss helps with that. As well as immigrants take this opportunity to start something either because of language barriers or access to other resources (Chinese immigrants open dry cleaners and laundry facilities because it cost little to do so and didn't require alot of English).

    But keep in mind (at least in the U.s) self-employed also applies to household workers (maids and nannies) as well as independent contractors. So is a maid someone who really owns her own business? Some companies would rather hire you as a independent contractor than a "full employee" so they won't pay benefits.

  25. I think to growing selfemployment pressure is going to be an inavitable but limited solution. It is less tied to the contracting so wherever the loyalty has importance the limits of selfemloymency are going to be bigger.

  26. There is definitely some advantage to being able to see both sides (as a business owner and as an employee). If these younger MBA students fresh out of University are starting up their businesses they may be lacking in some of the foundational concepts of running a successful business. One important aspect of being a successful business owner is knowing what type of employees to hire, and if you've never been on the other side as an employee you might not know what to look for. It will be interesting to see how things will turn out in North America and to see if other countries will follow the same patterns of having an increase in new business owners.

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