Startup Stock PhotosGeneration Y is rife with entrepreneurialism. Fortune noted how millennials have launched twice as many businesses as baby boomers, and a UBS survey found that eighty percent of top-earning millennials across the world consider themselves likely to start their own business or already have. 

At Invoice2go, entrepreneurship is at the heart of everything we do. We’re inspired daily by our small business customers – the real entrepreneurs and hustlers, working around the clock to run a successful business. And as one of the tools that make it simple to do just that, we wanted to take a deep dive into the generation that’s pursuing their own definition of self-employment. To do this, we asked the real-life “hustling millennials” (from freelancers to founders of startups), and leading experts in the space, for their take on what’s behind the trend. 

When it comes to why millennials are choosing to work independently, for many it’s all about pursing a higher purpose. “I see a generation that wants to live on purpose with purpose for a purpose,” says Paul Angone, author and creator of All Groan Up. And Anna Runyan, founder and CEO of career site Classy Career Girl, believes she can bring more value to the world and leave more of a legacy working independently. 

Working independently also means freedom and flexibility. Joan Snyder, founder of Why Millennials Matter, says working independently, “provides millennials with the type of flexibility with regards to where, when, and how they work that is more difficult to find with traditional employers.” For Gen Twenty’s Nicole Booz, it’s all about “the freedom to set our hours, work on specific types of projects, travel, etc. – these things are valuable to millennials.” 

The entrepreneurs we spoke with also had valuable advice to share for other young people looking to buck corporate tradition and go out on their own: Runyan says, “Don’t think about it for too long. Just get started. You’ll learn so much just by doing. Ask yourself, ‘If you had to make an income tomorrow and sell something, what would someone pay you for?’” The Confused Millennial blog and business coach Rachel Ritlop says “1) Know your value. What problem are you solving? How are you adding value to your customer or target audiences’ life? and 2) Let go of fear. Fear can get us stuck in comparison paralysis with competitors which can reduce productivity, results, and creativity.”

Here’s more on what these experts and others had to say about one of the most entrepreneurial generations ever:

Hustling Millennials infographic - UPDATED V7

 

Do you fall into this category yourself, or know someone who does? Share your stories or own ideas about the trend in the comments below!