Why Entrepreneurship is the New Job Security for Gen Y

by Sophia Bera on June 20, 2013

When I left my job a few months ago to start Gen Y Planning, there were many people that were nervous for my “lack of job security”  (I guess that I was one of those people!).  But I’ve seen so many people have success by running their own businesses and becoming entrepreneurs that I was so excited about creating what I’ve been dreaming about.

Entrepreneurship = Job Security

Most people don’t associate the word “entrepreneurship” with the phrase “job security” but I think that is going to change in the next decade.  According to this Forbes article by Jeanne Meister, “Ninety-one percent of Millennials (born between 1977-1997) expect to stay in a job for less than three years, according to the Future Workplace Multiple Generations @ Work” survey of 1,189 employees and 150 managers.  That means they would have 15 – 20 jobs over the course of their working lives!  All of this job hopping I believe is going to lead our generation into creating their own jobs by becoming entrepreneurs, freelancers, and small business owners so that we can create more meaningful work.

Goodbye Pensions and 40 Years of Loyalty

Gone are the days of robust pensions in exchange for 40 years of sacrifice at one company.  I only know a handful of people my age with pensions and many will choose to leave their current employers and rollover their pensions into other types of retirement vehicles.  This has already radically changed the longevity of employment at a single employer but I think bigger changes are still to come.  After seeing entire departments laid off at major corporations, companies fold under economic turmoil, and small companies cut the hours of key employees in hopes of saving their businesses, I no longer believe you can have “job security” while working for someone else. I believe that the only way to create job security is to create your own business with multiple income streams.

Happy and Successful People

The most financially secure and successful people I know are small business owners and entrepreneurs.  They are also the happiest.  When you run a business and work with many clients, very little changes when one client decides to no longer work with you. You can always scale back a few business expenses, while you work on landing your next client. However, when you work for an employer and you’re 100% dependent on receiving a paycheck from that employer, you leave yourself very vulnerable. If you get laid off, fired, or quit, 100% of your income goes away. Poof! There’s very little you can do to control what happens to your job if you work for someone else.  (That’s why emergency savings is so important!) These people also seem the happiest because they are running their businesses the way they want and they are building it from the ground up.  They are in control of their lives and their time.  (What could be better than that?!?!)

A Few Gen Y Entrepreneurs That I Admire

I look around at my friends, like Paula Pant from the blog Afford Anything and Carrie Smith from Careful Cents, who are successfully running their own businesses and I think “Yes!” they are making their own path!  They have freedom and flexibility and they are having fun while they do it!  They’ve created jobs leveraging the skills that they have, to create the lives that they want.  I know that they work really, freaking hard, but they now have multiple income streams and are able to outsource the work they don’t enjoy as much and say “yes” to the work that they love!  I anticipate that this trend will become the new American Dream.  (It’s already mine!)  Plus, the advancement of technology has allowed more and more Millenials to start online businesses, find freelance work fast, grow their customer base, outsource busy work, and keep their costs low.  I can’t wait to see what Gen Y accomplishes in the next decade because things are really changing quickly and I think they’re changing for the better.