State of Independence Report : 2012
Independence is now a conscious choice and new model of work and engagement by innovative Americans
The 2nd Annual MBO Partners State of Independence in America workforce study shows continued growth in America's commitment to independent work. Since the launch of the first-ever baseline study of independent work in America in 2011, nearly 17 million workers - up from 16 million last year - report in for independent work. They're increasingly satisfied with their work style and coping even better than before with the challenges that come with this less charted territory. And, consistent with the results of last year's inaugural report, independents show an even stronger preference for this path and have no plans of turning back.
The total independent workforce grew, and so too did the projected future size of this workforce, to be as many as 23-million strong in the next five years. The simultaneous growth in size, satisfaction, commitment and intent to choose the path, together suggest independence is far from a cyclical economic choice. It instead appears to signal a conscious structural shift and recognition of a new model of work and engagement by innovative Americans.
In fact, over the last year, despite the U.S. economic uncertainties, global volatility and election year jitters, independent workers continued to creatively forge their own economic opportunities and perceived that the drawbacks to independence were less daunting than the anticipated benefits. Channeling their entrepreneurial initiative, these independents bring in roughly one trillion dollars in revenue.
In 2012, it is clear America continues its march toward a new age of career independence where individuals will not just move from job to job, but rather move from engagement to engagement and client to client as masters of their own career destiny.