Freelancing in the United States 2015
For years, freelancers have been an important (and often overlooked) segment of the American workforce.…
As we all know, Donald Trump was elected as the 45th President of the United States. What does this mean for your freelancing business?
In this article, I will share my opinion.
Although most freelancers likely voted for Hillary Clinton, there are many positive opportunities that could arise from a Trump presidency.
As a lifelong Republican from Indiana (and someone who voted for Donald Trump), I believe there is a lot of upside to a Republican-led government. (Although Trump was not my choice in the primaries, I stayed loyal to the Republican ticket in the general election.)
From a purely economic standpoint, the thought of lower taxes is quite exciting. Each April 15th, when I review the amount of taxes I’ve paid, I think about how much contract labor I could have purchased with the said expense. I’m not the only person who feels this way. In fact, many of my clients and colleagues would rather invest in their workforce rather than write a big check to the government.
In addition, the Trump platform is very firm about repealing ObamaCare (also known as the Affordable Care Act). The Act has raised insurance costs, rather than reduce them. Anecdotally, my family’s insurance premiums have skyrocketed, despite the fact that we are very healthy. Moreover, I have received letters from my health insurance company, stating that my plan will no longer exist after 2017. New leadership represents the possibility of improving healthcare options for the self-employed.
Finally, at a macroeconomic level, many business owners (including myself) believe that less regulation is more conducive to a growing economy. If the Republican-led legislative and executive branches are able to peel back unnecessary regulations, then businesses could be more free to expand. In addition, entrepreneurs may be able to alleviate some of the many compliance-related costs, which are substantial – even for small businesses.
As with any political movement, the Trump presidency poses a number of potential downsides to virtual workers. For instance, a major talking point of the Trump campaign was a somewhat anti-globalist trade theme. Will there be new restrictions against hiring lower-cost freelancers in developing countries? Or, will freelancing be exempt from new legislation? It’s simply too early to tell.
Additionally, it appears that the Trump administration will be scaling back government expenditures. So, freelancers who work with clients in the public sector (or with clients who serve the public sector) may need to diverisfy their work portfolios to include additional private sector engagements. It’s difficult to say which departments or entities will be impacted by cutbacks, but large-scale budget cuts are likely. (At a macroeconomic level, such cuts could have positive long-term effects; but, in the short-term, freelancers may feel the consequences.)
There’s no question that our country is politically divided. All you need to do is look at an electoral map, and you’ll see red in the flyover states and blue surrounding large cities. Protests continue, further encouraging the divide.
But, when it comes to working with someone you disagree with, it’s important to remain professional and not let your political disagreements create unnecessary friction. We are all entitled to our opinions, which is why this country is so great. People on both sides of the aisle should find common ground, look for ways to bridge divides, and stay motivated to create value in the marketplace.
In doing so, we can avoid ugly confrontations and start to heal after this divisive election.