A New Wave Of The Great Resignation: Why It’s a Great Time For A Virtual BusinessJul 26, 2022
One of the unexpected consequences of the COVID-pandemic involved jobs. Millions of workers decided that they were not happy with the one they had. This led to such a novel challenge for both large and small companies that it earned its own business buzz phrase - The Great Resignation.
According to thousands of press reports, including this one from CNBC, even after the pandemic went into temporary abatement in the spring of 2022, the nationwide quitting spree continued: 4.5 million people, or 3% of the labor force, quit their job in March. Workers are feeling confident in a booming market where there are nearly two job openings for every person who wants one.
So, why aren’t HR directors and CEOs dancing in the conference rooms at this good news? There’s a black cloud moving in. The Great Resignation could be spreading to new sectors, where even middle- and high-wage workers are seeking big pay raises to ease the sting of inflation, which was partially fueled by pandemic causes such as supply chain disruptions.
Of course, greater income is a strong motivation to seek new employment, however, there may be more at work here than just a bump in wages. According to Andrew Flowers, labor economist at Appcast and research director at Recruitonomics, “The Great Resignation has not been about giving up on work. It’s about getting better opportunities.”
Higher Wage-Earners Joining the Exodus
As concerns about COVID have been reduced (although not completely dispelled due to new variants of the virus), the Great Resignation continues to cause consternation among companies in the lower wage service industries such as hospitality and food service.
However, new concerns about inflation and the increase in prices for basic needs - food, shelter, fuel - is causing a new wave of employees who are either calling it quits or looking for a “side hustle” to bring in more income. These professionals are found in the middle and higher-wage sectors such as education and “knowledge workers” in the technology sector.
Kathy Goughenour, the Founder, Business Coach and Trainer with Virtual Expert Training, has a unique perspective on the post-pandemic trend toward self-employment among all income and industry groups.
“I actually saw an increase as soon as COVID hit,” she said. “Many people wished they had already set up their virtual business. I had my virtual business established during the last recessions 2007-2008, and as with the income pressure felt with the pandemic, I was thankful that I already had this business operating and bringing in income.
“I have first-hand experience that working as an independent contractor is more recession proof than most businesses or jobs!”
What about these new members of the “resignation club?” Are these middle and higher- income professionals, whom Kathy has counseled, thinking about starting a virtual business as a second income or a full-blown career change?
“Many start with their virtual business as a second income or a side hustle,” she said. “They keep their jobs and do this on the side. This approach gives them the opportunity to discover if they really love working as a Virtual Expert® (VE) before they quit their job. And it allows them to begin to build their income stream from their business before quitting.
“For example, one of our successful colleagues, Dan Rondeau, who built “My Marketing VA Branding and Design” into a very successful business, had a job in the pharmaceutical industry. He built his virtual training business on the side. He quickly had more clients than time. So, he quit his job and, within 30 days, had fully replaced his income. His current goal is to double his previous income.
“Another great prospect to become a Virtual Expert is someone who knows they want to retire from their job in a few years and want to have a side hustle after they retire. By starting their virtual business while they are currently employed, they realize immediate additional income and then more easily transition into their new career after they retire.”
Teachers Are a Perfect Fit
There has never been a tougher time to be a teacher. After they complete many years of education, rigorous licensing and employment scrutiny and enormous on-the-job pressure from parents and administrators, many teachers feel under-appreciated and under-paid.
Teachers are extremely dedicated workers who have experienced enormous burn-out because of many factors, including lower wages, respect and even fear of violence. They also have the perfect skills to be successful in a virtual t business.
Kathy has worked with many teachers to become successful Virtual Experts and she LOVES them!
“Teachers can transition into virtual trainers very easily,” she said. “They have all the soft skills needed, such as a great work ethic. Plus, they are organized, they’re excellent communicators, and they love to learn. This is a recipe for an exemplary virtual trainer.
“Many teachers transition into supporting virtual businesses by doing whatever they enjoy teaching. For example, an English teacher might excel in writing blog posts, video scripts, social media posts, marketing email copy, and all types of online and traditional content development.
“Julie McNulty, who founded Writes Well With Others (https://writeswellwithothers.com/), a content-development company, is a great example. She built her virtual business by specializing as a writer. She now works half the hours she did as a teacher and earns twice as much than she did in education.
“The best part of transitioning from educator to entrepreneur is that it doesn’t matter what age group or what subject they taught – we’ve had kindergarten and gym teachers transition into Virtual Experts and grow quickly. I believe it’s because teachers have those basic soft skills needed to support businesses and they have the heart and desire to support them!”
The income generated from this type of business is far from “virtual.” It’s tangible!
Carrie Wulf, a stay-at-home mom and military spouse, started her virtual business in 2019. Before attending Virtual Expert Training, Carrie was charging $15 per hours and struggling to get clients. After the training, Carrie's hourly rate and ability to get clients grew. Today in 2022, she charges $65 per hour, typically invoices between $950 and $2,000 per month per client and works with an average of 5 clients per month. She just celebrated her first of many more to come, $10,000 revenue month. Carrie's clients love her work and, as a result, stay with her for years.
“Because the work is challenging and enjoyable, many VEs decide to seek a 6-figure income,” Kathy said. "This typically occurs in year two, as they can increase their hourly rate. It’s interesting to note that the average client who is a good fit for the Virtual Expert stays with them for an average of 4 to 7 years. The longest we have to date is 15 years and counting.”
It's important to note that that all income claims and testimonials shared by clients are understood to be true and accurate but are not verified in any way. It is always advisable for anyone considering a Virtual Expert career to do their own “due diligence,” and use their own judgement when making buying decisions and investments in a business.
If the pandemic taught us anything it’s the fragility of our health, our support systems, and our livelihoods. No one saw supply chain disruptions that would lead to lay-offs and inflation, or millions of people working from home, or especially the Great Resignation, as the result of COVID. And yet it happened.
The upside of this tumult is the introduction of a new world of work. Virtual tools, such as Zoom meetings, have become commonplace and non-threatening for every type of business and every worker. Plus, self-sufficiency has never been so highly valued.
“Many think the best way to take control of their lives is to wait until they’ve resigned, or they’ve retired,” Kathy concluded. “That’s the old way of thinking about changing careers. By starting a new business before resigning or retiring, a virtual entrepreneur has the luxury of ‘trying it on for size’ to be sure it’s a good fit. This has the added advantage of earning additional income at the same time.
“The time to start a virtual training business is now, not later.”
Do you deserve a better life? Of course, you do. Click here to get information on using your existing skills to start your own virtual business.
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