In April of 2020, four million people quit their jobs. In the media, it was chalked up to laziness. People in minimum wage positions who felt emboldened by the pandemic stimulus. Then in September of 2020, another 4 million people quit, bringing the unemployment rate to 15%—higher than it has been in 100 years. But this isn’t The Great Depression. This is the Great Resignation.
It turns out that not only minimum wage workers are quitting, but so are healthcare workers, millions of administrators, tech workers, educators… And with these 8 million resignations came a new wave of statistics that prove people aren’t getting lazy. People are getting ready—to bet on themselves and become their own boss. But how do you leave your job, without creating a new one?
Heading into 2022, America is a Start-Up nation, and there’s never been a better time to quit your J-O-B and pursue a future that you are passionate about.
So what’s driving The Great Resignation? It’s probably a combination of things.
Maybe it’s the lack of control we all collectively felt, suddenly being unable to do simple things. Sending our kids to school every day. Stepping into a crowded elevator. Going to a movie. Traveling. Throwing a birthday party. Maybe it was the shock of suddenly having so few choices in life—that made so many people wake up to how their place of employment offered them so few choices, so little control— over their own futures, their personal growth, their precious time…
When Jade Adams of Knoxville, TN, a wedding photographer, went into lockdown she used the time at home to throw herself into her house plant hobby. At one point she had collected over 200 exotic and rare plants, and they were completely taking over her apartment. Some might think this was a little excessive, but plants are her true passion. When she couldn’t possibly fit another plant in her apartment, she decided to sell a few on Facebook, and that went surprisingly well. Eager to make another paycheck, she opened a booth at a cultural event space in July of 2020 and made $15,000. She realized she wasn’t the only one who went all-in for their houseplants during the lockdown. The houseplant market was silently blowing up during the pandemic, as people at home tried to bring more of the outdoors inside.
That October, with every penny of her $20,000 in savings, Adams opened a brick-and-mortar shop she called Oglewood Avenue. Her investment was returned to her in less than a week.
As a wedding photographer, Adams was making 48k a year. In the first 6 months, Oglewood Avenue grossed over 200k. What a beautiful example of how to quit your job without creating a new one! Adams carved out a new career path for herself by using tools she had all along—skills she had developed while pursuing a passion.
Maybe this mass exodus was led by the sudden shift into remote work and virtual learning! So many people who couldn’t imagine doing their job from anywhere but the office—suddenly now they’re working from home! Making their kids lunch, walking their (much-happier) dog three times a day, and still getting their work done during regular business hours. Maybe that opened millions of eyes—showed them new ways to make money that they never knew were possible. Ways to use their talents to make MORE money from home while spending MORE time with their families, and having MORE control over their schedules. People began to see that they can be their OWN boss.
Maybe the worldwide sweep of the pandemic, with all the lives it swept away with it—caused a whole lot of people to snap out of workhorse mode and remember that “Whoa, life is short! Life is precious. Life is to be enjoyed…”
Whatever is driving The Great Resignation—If you hear the call within yourself to join your fellow Entrepreneurs and finally start betting on yourself, now is the time to do it. Don’t be afraid. Yes, the pandemic hit us hard, but throughout history, there has been a silver lining for Entrepreneurs after every major crisis in our country. During the 1930s, amidst the Great Depression, we invented television, commercial airlines, and air conditioning. The 2008 recession destroyed financial firms and housing markets, but it also launched Instagram, Uber, Airbnb, and WhatsApp. This pandemic has already launched 4 million new businesses, created millions of new jobs, and according to Dan Wang of Colombia University, “We could see a revival of society and economy just as the Roaring ’20s experienced after the first World War.”
It’s not at all a stretch to expect that we will be seeing a glorious explosion of new ideas coming from all these new ventures, and I’m so excited to see how your ideas contribute to making this world a better place.
I have put together for you a series of mission-critical questions to ask yourself that will help you make your first leap toward becoming your own best boss. You can find them, along with additional inspiration, by watching the full episode above!
Thank you so much for joining me today! Be sure to check out the full episode, and don’t forget to subscribe. I release new masterclasses every Tuesday and Thursday to keep you on top of all the latest branding strategies. And by the way, the #1 way to leave your job without creating a new one, is to love what you do and love how you do it.