The workforce is constantly changing. The ways in which a growing amount of people earn income now are different from what they looked like a decade ago. For starters, the rise of money making apps, remote work, etc., is a prevalent factor in the U.S. workforce. Each of these subsections comprise the broader world that is the gig economy.
Psychology Today notes that with the growth of the gig economy comes arguments for and against it. Pro-gig economy arguments generally note that this part of the workforce lets people set their own hours, enjoy greater workplace flexibility, etc. Anti-gig economy talking points typically paint this segment of the workforce as exploitative and absent of job security.
The gig economy is not for everyone. At the end of the day, each person must weigh the pros and cons and then determine what they think is best. If you’re unsure of how to proceed in regards to the gig economy, getting some professional advice from a counselor can be extremely helpful. You can also take online mental health tests to have a greater understanding of your mental health, like this one: https://www.mind-diagnostics.org/bipolar_disorder-test/
In the meantime, keep on reading to learn all about the pros and cons of the gig economy.
The Pros Of The Gig Economy
Millions of Americans engage in the gig economy each year. As such, the pros of this modern day workforce are as follow:
By far, one of the most notable upsides to the gig economy is greater flexibility. Freelance workers, for instance, have the luxury of setting their own schedules, rates, and workplace locations. Traditional employees, on the other hand, do not have this level of flexibility in their professional lives.
Gig economy workers who prefer to work remotely or find themselves to be more productive at certain times of the day have the luxury of setting their work schedules accordingly. Workers who are not part of the gig economy are not able to unilaterally make these types of decisions on their own without approval from a boss.
Multiple income streams
Individuals who work in the gig economy are very well-positioned for multiple streams of income. Many freelancers and other gig economy workers have multiple clients who they are responsible for delivering assignments to. With multiple clients comes diversified income. Ironically, this can engender greater job security than some traditional employees have from simply one income source.
Greater earning potential
As independent contractors, gig economy workers are able to set their own rates. In many cases, this ability can lead to workers earning more in the gig economy than they would at a traditional nine-to-five job.
The potential for greater earnings is imperative to upward mobility in society. As gig workers become more seasoned in their chosen line of work, they also become much better suited to seek more funds for the services they offer. By contrast, many traditional employees must either slowly climb the corporate ladder or wait for their bosses to approve a very conservative pay raise.
Folks working in the gig economy reap the benefits of much more independence in their professional lives. If working with certain clients turns out not to be a good fit, freelancers and others in the gig economy have the option of cutting ties with those particular clients.
Additional examples of room for independence in the gig economy include the ability to work without a boss standing over one’s shoulder, choosing one’s days off, and setting up one’s own workspace.
The Cons Of The Gig Economy
Despite the documented pros of the gig economy, some people have determined that the cons are of greater concern. With that in mind, the cons of the gig economy are as follows:
Feelings of isolation
Some people enjoy being able to go into the office and have regular interactions with their coworkers. More often than not, this does not come along with the gig economy; therefore, feelings of isolation and loneliness can arise. Some people may find that they prefer to be around others while working, rather than having to carry out work responsibilities alone.
No company benefits
Unlike the traditional workforce, company benefits are not part of the package when it comes to the gig economy. This means that freelancers and other gig workers have the responsibility of putting aside funds for healthcare, retirement, etc.
The one silver lining, however, is that gig economy workers have the option to speak with financial advisors on their own time; this can be greatly helpful for budgeting money to create one’s own benefits.
Lack of structure
Many people do well when they have structure put in place for when, where, and how they’re expected to work. However, the very nature of the gig economy requires workers to set their own structure, manage deadlines accordingly, and get tasks done within a certain timeframe.
This style simply doesn’t work for everyone. Folks who have trouble staying focused or exercising self-discipline may struggle in the gig economy. While some people are able to benefit from the lack of structure, it is certainly not for every single person in the workforce.
Possible Fluctuations In Work
The gig economy can be somewhat tumultuous, especially for workers who are newer or less seasoned. This can therefore lead to fluctuations in work, something that often engenders stress, especially if money is tight.
Many gig economy workers manage to eventually build up regular work and income; however, getting to this point can take some time and not everyone is 100% comfortable with that. Many workers appreciate having guaranteed, consistent income from a reliable source. In a case like this, the potential fluctuations in work associated with the gig economy can be a major downside.
Just like everything else in life, the gig economy has its pros and cons. There is no one right or wrong answer as to whether or not the pros outweigh the cons or vice versa.
When it’s all said and done, people must make their own decisions about whether they wish to participate in the gig economy. Some folks are more suited for traditional employment, whereas others find the gig economy to be a better fit for them.