top of page

The significance of organizations amid freelancing

AS of this writing, there are reportedly 1.57 billion freelancers worldwide, constituting 47 percent of the global workforce. This figure surged significantly during the pandemic and is projected to continue growing as Western countries seek cost-effective labor alternatives, often outsourcing to countries with lower wage structures.

The term "freelancing" dates back to the 19th century, originally referring to medieval mercenaries, but has later on evolved to signify any project-based engagement undertaken by professionals in general. In our modern times, freelancing connotes lucrative service fees and freedom accorded by working anywhere.

With the allure of freelancing for almost anyone, one might ask: what value is left in working for a traditional company? Or on a broader scale, building an organization?

There are three distinct advantages that organizations offer:

Multiplier effect. Organizations act as the foundational stepping stone for aspiring freelancers. An organization may give free pass to apprenticeship in the form of an immediate superior. In his book "Mastery" (2012), Robert Greene stressed the importance of selecting workplaces and positions that offer the greatest possibilities for learning since practical knowledge remains the ultimate commodity and what will pay dividends in the long run.

While the concepts of first principles thinking and challenging the status quo are essential for innovation, organizations hold a wealth of distilled practical knowledge gained through experiences. This knowledge, passed down through a structured process, accelerates success by avoiding the repetition of past mistakes.

Organizations are uniquely positioned to foster the development of masters who will take in apprentices, who then become mentors themselves, creating a continuous chain of succession — a key advantage touched upon by the next point.

Business continuity. The advantage of business continuity is twofold: for the internal stakeholders (employees) and the external ones (customers).

Internally, an organization can be designed to persist beyond one's lifetime. In their book "Built to Last," Jim Collins and Jerry Porras remark that the successful companies focus their efforts in "building the clock" instead of simply "telling the time." They maintain that the products are not the company's ultimate creation, but rather the companies themselves and what they stand for.

Externally, business continuity translates to quality, assuring stakeholders that the organization operates with minimal dependence on a single individual. Properly designed business continuity plans enhance long-term partnerships and relationships.

It is interesting to note that organizations usually are a product of freelancing such that when one intends to pass the clientele onto the next generation, an organization is inadvertently created. The same goes with the intention to scale up operations and achieve synergy.

Synergy. Napoleon Hill, in "Think and Grow Rich," urges us to form a "mastermind group" consisting of your ideal personalities that you can consult through imagination and reflect on what they would say in a given situation. Hill's approach is nothing short of acknowledgement that it really takes different points of view to truly facilitate creative solving processes, and an organization could not be in a better position to provide a platform for synergy, described by Stephen Covey as "highest activity in all life."

At the risk of sounding cliché, synergy indeed makes 1+1=3, and no man, after all, is an island. In fact, you can also observe organizations springing out in the form of alliances, associations or any online community, as a result of freelancers wanting to converge and brainstorm about cases encountered in their individual practices, bringing about elevated quality of solutions that enhance the overall value provided to clients.

Just as it takes multiple specialists to effectively run a hospital, organizations leverage diverse skills to create more comprehensive and innovative solutions.

While the rise of freelancing disrupts traditional work dynamics and prompts larger players to keep complacency in check, the long-term, catalytic gains provided by organizations cannot be disregarded. In an era celebrating individual economic gains through freelancing, the enduring value of belonging to an organization will always remain relevant in professional and economic development.


Christian Fev E. Cendaña is the managing partner of Caparros, Cendaña and Co. (Pasig City) and an Acpapp Rizal Chapter member. His opinion does not reflect in any way those of these institutions.

65 views0 comments


Post: Blog2_Post
bottom of page