Independent workers, founders, creators and organizers are often lumped together with a simple term, but that one-size-fits-all model fits no one.
You might be an entrepreneur, building a significant business by borrowing money to buy machines or to develop a market, focused on creating value, improving your leverage and eventually selling the company when it reaches scale.
Or you could be a bootstrapper, focused on avoiding financing while building an organization that pays for itself as it scales. It’s a different discipline from the first moment to the last, one that brings freedom along with responsibility.
Perhaps you’re a freelancer, getting paid when you work, and aware that your labor and your craft is how you make a difference. The only way for a freelancer to make a bigger impact is to have better clients, which is a project unto itself.
And it could be that you are committed to running a small business, the backbone of our culture, a craft that works at the right scale and doesn’t worry a lot about what the business magazines have to say.
I hope you’re not a tech-bro, building a make-believe business that’s somehow valued at a billion dollars even though it has no visible business model.
You could happily be an impresario, someone who produces, arranges and orchestrates an event or a movement. (Just posted, a long lost lecture on this).
Whatever you choose, choose! Being confused, seeking the best of each of these while experiencing the worst of all of them is no way forward.
Indies create possibility, they shape the culture and they make things better. We need you more than ever.