4 entrepreneurs Jacob Zinkula

Many people are taking stock of their jobs and career goals as the new year approaches. Millions of US workers have started businesses of their own in the last few years.

Five million new business applications were filed by Americans in 2011. The self-employed accounted for over 10% of the workforce in June, the highest share in six years.

There are several possible explanations for the increase in self employment. Some Americans in need of work decided to start their own businesses after millions of jobs were lost in the beginning of the Pandemic. As their inflation-adjusted earnings declined, others have bet that it's their best chance of getting ahead financially.

More Americans could be self-employed if there is a recession. During economic downturns, people find a different way to provide for themselves and their families if they are laid off.

Four Americans started their own businesses over the last few years. They shared their stories, as well as the advice they have for other people.

Adison Landon Adison Landon

Adison decided to start her own business in October of 2021.

She worked at the local aquarium store as a service technician for three years, installing and maintaining fish tanks for homes and businesses. She was unhappy with her pay.

She asked for a raise to $27 an hour and no weekends. She decided to start her own business after her employer failed to meet her demands.

She bought a van that holds a 65-gallon water tank and a pump for mixing saltwater on the go and took half the clients she'd been servicing with her previous employer. The business generated over $4,000 in sales in its first month of operation.

A 31 year old woman quit her job and started her own business because she was dissatisfied with her pay.

Ellen Lichtenstein 3 Ellen Lichtenstein

Ellen Lichtenstein felt burned out in her six-figure content marketing job at a software technology provider.

She decided that she was done. I am out of here.

She took a leave of absence, but never came back. She said she has never been happier because she has two businesses, one full-time and one part-time, and she is making more money.

She believes she can retire by 55.

Lichtenstein attributes a lot of her success to the 15 years of connections she has built across different industries.

A 38 year old woman quit a 6 figure job to start her own business. She wants to retire by age 55.

Joe Mlaker 2 Joe Mlaker

Mlaker presided over his last service on a Sunday in May. He retired and moved to Florida with his wife.

He decided to start an interior painting business.

Through the month of September, he made more than $3,000 in profit after taking on work in July.

As the stock market has fallen, it's become a more important source of supplemental income for Mlaker, who started the business because he was restless and looking for something to do.

A former pastor started a painting business after retiring because his stock investments are tanking.

Antisha Walley Antisha Walley

Antisha Walley disagreed with the decisions of her superiors as she worked in corporate human resources roles.

In January of 2020, the Air Force veteran decided she could do the job better herself and launched her own human resources consulting business.

She brought in $3,000 in sales in 2020. She quit her full-time job to devote all her time to the business.

The money is paid off. She said she expects to make $70,000 this year from her sales, which she said would be over $100,000.

For Walley, who has worked in the military, meteorology, banking, construction, and human resources, starting her own business was a long time coming.

A veteran left her job and started her own business because she knew she could do it better.

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