Are You Joining "The Great Resignation?"

December 17, 2021

Are You Joining "The Great Resignation?"

May 29, 2023

Your career will likely last fifty years or more. That’s a life sentence without much punctuation. Who knows, your mid-50s could even be your mid-career?

This was true before the pandemic, but “The Great Resignation” has created a collective reflection like never before. Based upon the number of U.S. workers who quit their jobs in August and September (continuing a trend since April), more than one-third of the American workforce will resign from their job over this 12-month period. A recent Microsoft Corp. survey showed that almost half of all the world’s workers are considering quitting. We’ve never seen numbers like this before.

Generally, economists are not psychologists so they’ve done a pretty pathetic job of telling us why this phenomenon is occurring. But, it’s clear to me the pandemic has unleashed a historic burst in entrepreneurship and self-employment. It makes sense as people are anxious about Covid exposure, have gotten used to working at home, are looking for more flexibility in their hours, and, those who are later in their career, might want to work part-time.

Here are some stats that might give you some confidence to pursue your passion:

  • The U.S. has more unincorporated, self-employed workers than ever before according to Labor Department data. The total amounts to an increase of 6% in the self-employed, while the overall U.S. employment total remains nearly 3% lower than before the pandemic.
  • Entrepreneurs applied for federal tax-identification numbers to register 4.54 million new businesses from January through October this year, up 56% from the same period of 2019, Census Bureau data show. That was the largest number on record. Two-thirds were for businesses that aren’t expected to hire employees…in other words, “solo-preneurs.”
  • This year, the share of U.S. workers who work for a company with at least 1,000 employees has fallen for the first time since 2004, Labor Department data show. Meanwhile, the percentage of U.S. workers who are self-employed has risen to the highest in 11 years.
  • Etsy Inc., an online marketplace for individuals to buy and sell items, says it had 7.5 million active sellers as of Sept. 30—up 2.6 million from that time in 2019. Eight in 10 are women. Its surveys indicate more than 4 in 10 of the new sellers started their businesses for reasons related to the pandemic, including for some the need to stay home to care for family members.
  • In the LinkedIn universe, the number of members who indicate they are self-employed by listing services from a field called “Open to Business” has quadrupled since the pandemic began, to 2.2 million, the company said. Enterprises founded by women have grown by 27% and male-founded ones by 17% since the pandemic started, according to a LinkedIn analysis of user profiles.


So, if you’re pondering resigning, you’re midway through writing your business plan or if you’ve already launched your business and are iterating, we’re proud to announce a new MEA workshop in Baja that we’ve just put on the MEA website. It’s a Mastery Week called “Creating a Business and Big Life in Midlife” and will occur on our Baja campus February 28 - March 5. Two years ago, my cofounder Jeff Hamaoui and I led a slightly-different version of this workshop and it sold out very quickly (remember, we do have scholarships as well). It was our next to last workshop before MEA had to shut down due to Covid.

The slight shift on what we presented two years ago is how do you incorporate lifestyle desires into your plan to become an entrepreneur as that has increasingly become a high priority for those who are resigning. As someone who created a boutique hotel company named and based upon the principles of “joie de vivre” (joy of life), I can tell you this has been on my mind for 35 years since I started that enterprise and Jeff is a role model for me. Both Jeff and I look forward to imparting some wisdom to you.

So, if you’re ready to chuck the corporate politics or bureaucracy, want to go to a yoga class or two-hour hike in midday, need a flexible work plan that allows you to also be a caregiver, or just have a passionate idea that needs some inspiration, bring it to this workshop as we’ll create a “mastermind” support network to help you live your dreams.

Lastly, if not now, when?

Go deeper with a workshop, in person or online.

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