O'Reilly logo

The Future of Work: Attract New Talent, Build Better Leaders, and Create a Competitive Organization by Jacob Morgan

Stay ahead with the world's most comprehensive technology and business learning platform.

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required

Chapter 4The Freelancer Economy

When writing this book I was debating on whether to discuss freelancers or those who technically aren't considered true “employees.” However, this is such a big part of what's happening today and will happen in the future, that it simply cannot be ignored. There is a massive shift happening in the world of work that goes beyond what we think of as the traditional employee. In fact, an entire book can be written about this topic (perhaps an idea for my next book!), but I'd at least like to touch on it here.

According to Wikipedia, the term freelancer was first used almost 200 years ago by novelist and poet Sir Walter Scott to describe medieval mercenary warriors in his historical novel Invahoe. They were freelancers because they were not sworn to any particular lord and they were available to be hired.

According to a report by Intuit called the “Intuit 2020 Report: Twenty Trends That Will Shape The Next Decade,”1 which was published in 2010, by 2020 around 40 percent of the U.S. workforce will be working as freelancers, temp workers, or contractors (some predict this number to get as high as 50 percent). This amounts to around 60 million people in the United States alone. A report by MBO Partners called “The State of Independence in America,”2 which was released in September of 2013, found that there were around 18 million independents in the workforce in 2013. The demographics of this group is also quite diverse with one in five being millennials, ...

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, interactive tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required