A recent article from Sam over at Financial samurai asked if people are too proud to be rich.
This is an interesting article, and its main point is that people who decide to not go the typical “corporate” route might end up making much, much more than people who just follow the herd mentality: go to a great school, accumulate debt, becoming relatively well paid in a regular job.
By comparison, Sam and many other entrepreneurs are making upper 6 digit income, sometimes millions every year, just because they hustle.
I’m all in favor of hustling and having a side gig. In my case, my side gig is one of the key components that give me a chance at reaching financial independence soon.
What I don’t like however in the Financial Samurai article, is the extremely biased example that is used to make his point: Uber drivers/referrers make more money than Uber employees. Sam goes into detail, describing how the top Uber referrers are all making much more money than actual Uber employees, implicitly questioning why Uber employees are even working for the company rather than becoming referrer themselves.
Well, there’s a critical flaw here, that nobody seems to be questioning: The article compares top Uber referrers to average Uber employees. Wow, the top 10 Uber referrers make more than the average Uber employee? What a shock. /sarcasm
Let’s compare the Top Uber employees to the average Uber driver or Uber referrer next time, to make things fun, shall we? As a result, we might find that being an Uber referrer will land you less than minimal wage, while the top Uber employees all make 7 figures every year. Which would basically build the exact opposite case.
It’s not pride that prevents people from making lots of money. Side gigs are great, but most of them bring close to no money: many entrepreneurs fail. A vast majority of them do just “average” and would probably have similar financial results if they were part of the corporate world. Having your own business also means you’re in charge of the associated expenses such as healthcare (or gas, wear & tear, etc… if you’re an Uber driver). You also give up on some of the benefits from your company (401k match,…). Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying corporate jobs are the best (this blog is all about escaping mine!), but painting a pink picture made of unicorns and rainbows for Uber drivers, just to get more referral clicks is dishonest.
At the end of the day, The financial samurai article makes a good point (successful businesses aren’t necessarily the most glamor ones), but bases it on a completely flawed argument. Any other example would have worked better, so why use this bad Uber example? Surely, this has nothing to do with the fact that the article is full of referral links to Uber, right?