What's a Solopreneur?
Independent workers now account for about a third of the American workforce, and it is not just millenials who are turning away from traditional work structures, more and more workers of all ages are heading towards independence. With terms like side-gigger, freelancer and solopreneur all referring to independent workers, it’s easy to get the terms confused even though they are all different styles of working. The term solopreneur has been around for a while now, however many people are not quite sure what exactly a solopreneur is and if they’re more like an entrepreneur or a freelancer.
How do Solopreneurs differ from Entrepreneurs?
Much like an entrepreneur, a solopreneur is a business person. Unlike entrepreneurs, solopreneurs have no staff and are not looking to acquire any, nor are they hoping to expand and sell their business to a bigger corporation in the future. They are a one-person shop focused on their product and want to keep it that way. Solopreneurs tend to stick to one skill area or niche consistently, whereas entrepreneurs may try out a few things based on where they think business will grow. The main work of an entrepreneur is making connections and managing, while their team works on their product.
Are Solopreneurs the same as Freelancers?
Both freelancers and solopreneurs are workers (not managers) who want to focus on their work product rather than managing a business. Working on their own they enjoy a high degree of freedom in their work, freelancers and solopreneurs don’t have to worry about company politics, shareholders and working with or managing other employees. In fact the way solopreneurs and freelancers work is so similar that many people use the terms interchangeably, however there is one key difference between them:
Solopreneurs want to be business savvy and hustle their brand so they can get more business and better jobs, whereas freelancers are happy with the work they have.
Solopreneurs are enthusiastic about building their business, whereas freelancers see themselves more as talent-for-hire and not as a business. Solopreneurs make optimal use of technology, such as social media platforms, to market their business; they work on building their brand so that they can build their business, get more work and increase their fees. Freelancers might be side-giggers, supplementing their main income with some freelance work, or they might have been lucky enough to find a few steady clients that provide enough work and income that they are content without needing to expand their reach. If you’re interested in the statistical differences between freelancers and solopreneurs, there are some handy infographics available here and there.
Who Benefits from the Rise of Solopreneurs?
Solopreneurs may be solo-brands and free to carve their own path, but that doesn’t mean that they always work completely alone. The good news for everyone is that solopreneurs tend to hire other independent workers in order to get help with parts of their business that are beyond their skills. For example, a solopreneur writer might hire a solo graphic designer to help them with their brand logo, that graphic designer might hire a business consultant and a social media manager, they in turn might hire accountants and writers, and on and on. The increase in work will lead to more and more work for all kinds of independent workers, solopreneurs, freelancers and side-giggers - it’s a great time to be an independent worker! Solopreneurs might even band together with other independent workers in order to complete a large project for a client, there is no end to possible work scenarios as the workforce increasingly shifts towards this new style of working. If you’re ready to try independent working, sign up with SageGroupy to get started and check out our next blog to see if being a solopreneur is right for you.