Whatever happened to the stability of markets, a reliable workforce, and the certainty of living your life with some state of normalcy – having a family, buying a home, putting your kids through college, retirement? Trusting business and political leaders to exercise sound judgment and decision-making on behalf of workers and the electorate is what happened. Then came the gift from China, COVID19, and the shut down of our economy. Now millions are not working and have no assurance their jobs will return, if ever.
In retrospect, after the events of 911 leading to 20 years of warfighting, the tech value market bust in 2006, the collapse of financial markets in 2008, and the rise of radical socialism, one could quickly lose perspective and faith. Politically, our nation is more divided than ever with creeping socialism broadly infecting the disadvantaged and youthful idealism. Freelance and independent workers of all political persuasions are left to their resources with little or no support while swimming in a sea of misinformation.
Major news outlets and academia have their agendas and are the pied pipers to misinformed youth with a constant drumbeat touting socialist demands in our largest cities. Will voters push back in November 2020 against anarchy and rioting, or will some state and local politicians continue to placate youthful idealism and anarchists? How will this affect freelancing gig workers to earn a livable income? How will it affect the continued use of independents by employers?
Freelancers and those employers who will be using independent contractors in more significant numbers will have to navigate these uncharted waters carefully. The fact is, "there is no free lunch and no free healthcare." Individuals will need to be much more thoughtful and less trusting regarding career opportunities and healthcare decisions. Good or bad, we must learn to deal with it. We are no longer an insulated nation from economic fluctuations driven by events out of our control.
The corona virus-19 global outbreak reminds us that our global working populations are integrated into the economic life of all. Does that mean that policies leaning toward globalization will return? Will our policies toward nations like China be strong enough to reconstitute lost industries and jobs back to America as a matter of national security?
Most freelancers and those who contract with them will find keeping informed and forecasting career options daunting in this environment. Navigating these multi-layered issues will occupy hours of data collection and analysis to view the course ahead. Wow, that is all we need is another time consumer on issues we have little knowledge about, right? True, but we will have to find a way to accomplish that or leave our chances for survival and success to others.
Here are six actions for freelancers to help clarify a survival path forward while the pandemic remains active. The first four may be obvious, but a gentle reminder will help.
More freelancer actions are on my website. I try to cut through all the noise and hyperbole to reveal the critical stuff behind all the noise, which many never see, to help clear the view ahead. Keep in the KNOW. Subscribe now to my articles, insight, and opinions delivered to your inbox when published.
Check out Visual Capitalist chart “18-Month View of Post-COVID19 World"
Mike Hammer a.k.a. Hib
Author, Workforce Strategist & the Gig Doctor