Self-employment in the UK has significantly risen in the last 40 years and the number of people choosing to work for themselves is at the highest it has ever been before.
In 2015, over 4.6 million people decided to become their own boss. This is 15% of the UK’s population, but what were the key factors in their decision to do this?
Conducting a survey through OnePoll for Reed Commercial asking 100 people questions about their previous employment and the decision in becoming their own boss proved some interesting results. The survey provided valid evidence that 70% of Brits decision in being self-employed was heavily affected by their previous boss.
When asked ‘did disliking your previous boss/bosses have an affect on your decision to become your own boss?’ a whopping 71.83% of respondents said ‘yes’. So indeed, these individuals faced a tough time during their previous position of employment, but what were their reasons behind disliking their boss? One responded began with ‘where do you want me to start?’ Followed by an elaboration on how their previous managers were all ‘petty little people’. Another shocking response included one candidate demonstrating the racial discrimination which they faced in drawing on the fact that their boss offered somewhat ‘different treatment to black people’. Other popular responses involved ‘rudeness’, ‘lack of concern’ and unprofessional manners, which was often ‘verbally abusive’, but what heavily dominated the answers given was that their previous bosses were ‘arrogant’. From the survey, it was apparent that almost one 3rd of the respondents are now franchisors or franchisees. Hereby, we can conclude that after being subject to an ‘unorganised’, ‘rude’ and ‘inflexible’ workplace, these individuals took the plunge in doing the job themselves, where they can now offer a professional and respectful working environment.
From the survey, it was also evident that almost an equal amount of males and females decisions in becoming their own boss was heavily dependent on the fact that their previous bosses only believed ‘in the worst of people.’ The results showed that 72.09% of males and 71.43% of females were affected by their previous workplace and how this was the dominant factor in them becoming their own boss.
For those who worked in the sectors of charity and volunteering, healthcare, hospitality and events management, media and the Internet, property and construction, public services, sales, science and pharmaceuticals and social care, the decision to become their own boss was entirely based on the way in which they were treated by their previous management. Further research on these sectors and their responses in the survey showed that 44% of are now a franchise or franchisee. These individuals now speak of how they adopt methods to ensure a workplace that is ‘equal’ and ‘fair’. One respondent even highlighted that their ‘workers are happy’ because of this positive attitude in the business. For these individuals, becoming their own boss has enabled them to run a business in which they can give back a positive environment to their colleagues and make them feel wanted. One person even spoke of how being respectful to their colleagues has rendered them a far ‘more approachable boss’ who is ‘understanding’ of their staff.
It is apparent that a number of people in the UK have decided to become self-employed after negative experiences in previous place of work. Almost two 3rds of Brits who are now their own boss, admitted that their decision to run a business was heavily influenced by the way they were treated during their last role and how this has heavily impacted on their management style. Now that they are able to run a workplace themselves, these individuals aim to abolish ‘rudeness’, ‘poor communication’ and any other terrible attitudes within the workplace and can conduct a professional working environment which can offer the essential support and ‘understanding’ to its colleagues in order for them to flourish.