The traditional fulltime corporate world isn’t for everyone.
Some people simply want more control over their work, more diversity and more flexibility. Thankfully, you have options—and these days, more than ever.
In fact, the recent, dramatic rise of career alternatives has even spawned a new term in pop culture: “The gig economy.” If the daily grind has got you down, you may want to consider your options in this expanding global marketplace.
First, let’s define exactly what the gig economy is. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, gig workers cover a broad range of occupational groups. They provide services on a temporary, short-term, freelance or contract basis typically to deliver a single project or task.
Access to the gig economy has gotten easier in the past few years, thanks to the emergence of the digital marketplace—websites that connect businesses with gig workers.
According to Aimy Ngo of Fiverr, a leader in the digital marketplace, there’s a wide spectrum of career opportunities here for people with all kinds of skills and varying levels of commitment.
Replace Your Fulltime Job
If you’re interested in simply replacing your fulltime job for a fulltime gig position, that’s possible. Some gigs allow you to work for one organization on a single project for an extended period.
The benefit is that gig positions generally provide more flexibility. You can often work off-site and make your own hours. Because you’re an independent worker, you typically manage your time and processes without direct daily oversight.
Also read: Is Flexibility The Most Important Perk?
If you’re not quite ready to jump in full force, try a gig position on the side while working your regular fulltime job. This can help you gain valuable experience in an area you want to explore more in your career while also providing a supplemental income.
Explore Diverse Opportunities
Those who want a greater diversity of work can thrive in the gig economy. Because you’re a free agent, you have more control over the work you do. You can take on multiple projects across various fields of expertise or specialize in one area. You can serve many different clients and pull together a fulltime income by working many part-time positions. The opportunities are practically limitless.
A recent study conducted by Intuit predicted that by the year 2020, almost half of American workers will be independent contractors. While these positions are most common in the tech, arts, and communications fields, other business areas are heading this direction as well.
Of course, it’s worthwhile noting that these kinds of positions also have drawbacks. As a gig worker, you won’t be eligible for benefits, like company health insurance, and you won’t have the stability of full-time employment. Your income won’t be as predictable, and the lack of structure can certainly challenge some people.
However, if you’re feeling stagnant in your career and looking to shake things up, this new economy offers plenty of opportunity. You don’t have to feel stuck in the traditional working world if it’s just not for you.