Tired of Working for ‘The Man?’ 4 Career Paths with No Boss

There are many Career Paths with No Boss out there

Are you tired of punching a time card day in and day out—maybe even literally? Many self-motivated people excel in flexible career paths without a traditional management structure. Approximately one in 10 U.S. workers is self-employed, according to statistics from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Whether you’re simply looking for an exciting change of pace or you’re fed up with your micromanaging superiors nitpicking your every move, consider these four career paths when you’re looking to take control of your work-related destiny.

Sole Proprietor

Are you someone who puts pressure on themselves to succeed? Are you a master of conquering deadlines without breaking a sweat? If so, establishing a sole proprietorship may be right up your alley. As the U.S. Small Business Administration writes, this is a simple business structure in which you alone are entitled to your small business’s profits but you alone are responsible for taxes, liabilities, and accumulated debts.

One benefit to owning your own business singlehandedly is that you can provide the exact products and services that suit your skillset and expertise. If you feel like you’re wasting your talents on your current career, maybe it’s time to go into business for yourself as a sole proprietor. Many freelancers are sole proprietors who enjoy the freedom of accepting the right projects from the right clients.

Property Manager

Business News Daily ranked property manager as the number one job for people who want to be self-employed in 2016, noting that over 40 percent of property managers are self-employed.

Managing your own rental units, whether it’s a standalone home that you fixed up yourself or a multi-unit commercial space, is a challenging yet rewarding way to make a living. The biggest decision boils down to which market you want to enter and how to choose properties that will provide a positive cash flow over time. First-time and experienced landlords alike often work with property management to help them centralize payments, maintenance requests, listings, tenant screenings, and other sensitive details.

Real Estate Agent

If the idea of working on commission excites you, or you find the idea of helping people get the keys to their dream home fulfilling, then becoming a real estate broker may be the right path for you. You’ll have to study up, obtain the proper licensure, and enroll in continuing education every so often, but you’ll also enjoy more job flexibility and human interaction than a typical office job can provide. You’ll be out in the field—in this case houses in your area that are on the market—showing prospective buyers around, answering questions, and handling paperwork.

As The Balance points out, real estate agents are often the link between the client and a jargon-filled, numbers-heavy industry. If you pride yourself on your people skills and know how to market yourself well, you may want to consider a career in real estate.


Have you built up a wealth of expertise in your field? One way to stay connected to your current industry while making a job shift is to offer your consulting skills. Whether you’re in human resources, life coaching, IT or any other field imaginable, there is likely someone out there who will pay you by the hour for your services.

Consulting can be advantageous because of its minimal start-up cost. A consultant is on the hook for their own marketing materials and office supplies, but this comes at a much lower cost than a warehouse for inventory or renting a commercial space.

The most important part of switching from working for someone to working for yourself is keeping your eyes and your options open. You may have a highly marketable skill without even realizing it! Take stock of your financial, career, and personal goals and transition into a field that allows you to be your own boss when the time is right.