The Best Types of Self-employment


The "best" self employment depends largely on personal preference, but most entrepreneurs would agree that the definition includes the ability to make a good profit, enjoy safe and interesting work, and enjoy the freedom to advance and develop in a chosen career path. Some entrepreneurs are interested in financial security, while others seek excitement and risk.

Building Contractors

Many building tradespeople are self-employed and make a good living by providing businesses and homeowners with a wide range of building services. Carpenters, plumbers, electricians, roofers and other tradespeople offer specialized skills that are indispensable to their clients. Unlike other self-employment fields that focus on luxuries, contracting is a fairly stable field because a house is considered a necessity. Although opportunities in new construction are subject to fluctuations in the economy, work in renovation is almost always available for the ambitious contractor.


Consultants work in knowledge-based industries. Many consultants are former professionals who either lost their jobs involuntarily or left their positions to find independent success. Consultants in fields as diverse as computers, culinary arts, architecture, personal care and financial management offer their expertise to clients for a price. Consultants who reach the top of their field and are sought after for superior knowledge can make a very good living. Like any field of self-employment, consulting requires self-discipline and focus to be able to succeed without having a boss look over your shoulder.


Working in the field of aesthetics can provide a part- or full-time living for people who are accomplished in the field of hairstyling, skin care, manicures and pedicures. An advantage of self-employment as an aesthetician is that start-up costs can be quite low. Many aestheticians have experience working for someone else as part of a larger operation, then start their own business, sometimes in their own homes. For parents with young children, this can be a workable income that removes the need for commuting and child care. Many aestheticians make social and personal contacts in their communities through their work.

Freelance Writing

Freelance writing is an ideal form of self-employment for people who are creative, motivated, disciplined and somewhat solitary. Succeeding as a writer requires many hours spent alone, and these hours must be spent working rather than surfing the Internet. Writers also spend a lot of their time seeking new clients and new venues for their work. Virtually no capital is required to begin working as a freelance writer, so people with little or no income can use it to improve their situation without going into debt. While a very small percentage of writers actually achieve any level of fame and fortune, a large number are able to support themselves independently.

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