Majority of Americans who left the workforce to become entrepreneurs want to be their own boss or pursue their passion
Digital.com, a leading independent review website for small business online tools, products, and services, has published a new survey report to examine why millions of Americans are leaving the workforce. According to the study, 4 million people resigned from their jobs in April of 2021. Digital.com surveyed 1,250 adults 18 and older who quit their jobs within the last six months to gain more insight into the declining labor force participation.
Key findings show 1 in 3 workers, who quit their jobs within the last six months, started a business. Sixty-two percent of respondents say they are starting a business to be their own boss, and 60% say they are passionate about pursuing a business idea. The most popular industries for new business owners include IT, retail, and personal care services.
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“People are rethinking their career paths and reimagining what it means to achieve financial freedom and break the cycle of living paycheck-to-paycheck.”
Although many respondents say the pandemic influenced their decisions, they also cite several reasons for leaving the workforce. Forty-four percent of workers quit their jobs because they want better wages and benefits, 42% want to focus on their health, and 41% desire a more rewarding career. Sixty percent of new entrepreneurs learned about launching a startup business during the pandemic lockdown.
“The pandemic forced us to quickly adapt to new technology as well as virtual work and social activities,” says Dennis Consorte, startup consultant and small business expert. “Perhaps the most impactful change is that many people are rethinking their career paths and reimagining what it means to achieve financial freedom and break the cycle of living paycheck-to-paycheck.”
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The study suggests that men and high-income earners are more likely to quit their jobs and start a new business. Thirty-six percent of men left the workforce to pursue entrepreneurship, compared to 27% of women. Likewise, 42% of respondents who earn $150,000 or more annually resigned from their jobs to start a business. People who earn $50,000 or less accounted for only 27% of new entrepreneurs.
Digital.com commissioned this survey and selected appropriate respondents via a screening question. Respondents shared information about why they resigned from work, why they want to start a business, and the preferred industry for starting their business. The survey was administered by Pollfish, the online survey platform, from July 21 through July 22, 2021.