eggsSomeone got canned at work. Or at least, I think that’s what happened. It was choreographed better than the Bolshoi.

The person sent an email to her staff at the end of a day. But seriously, who really would rather quit work to spend time with their kids? That surely is more harrowing and exhausting than any job. The whole “spending time” phrase I see as code for “I got sacked.” Early the next morning the email got forwarded to staff in a related department. At a morning meeting, they learned they would need to absorb some of the spillover work in the interim.

I think the leaders deserve kudos for being open about what was going on. And by “open,” I mean that they even acknowledged that someone had left. Sure, the spin doctors were at work. But at least it was out.

Things are not always that transparent. Not even translucent, really. People who held certain jobs would just disappear and none of the leaders would say anything. It was like we were back in Stalinist times when people just vanished from their homes at night. When pressed, the only reason a boss could come up with was cancer. It seemed to be his stock answer. We peons were convinced the leaders were making up stories. They seemed afraid to veer anywhere near saying the name of the person who was let go.

This all came flooding back after my recent interview with Diana Schneidman. She was talking about the pros and cons of going it on your own. Having several clients is safer than having only one, which is essentially what working a full-time job amounts to.

In the world of finance, you always hear about the benefits of diversifying, or spreading your money among different kinds of investments. Why? It spreads the risk. You don’t put all your eggs in one basket. If one egg breaks, it helps to have eggs stowed in other baskets too. Other baskets are a backup plan.

While many people assume a full-time job is safer than going it on your own, it’s times like these when I’m reminded of how tenuously we cling to our jobs. The thread that connects us to our companies can be so easily snipped. You mouth off to the wrong person. You mess up one project. Or it may not even be something you control. Maybe your nasal twang irritates your boss. Maybe that habit of interrupting people gets you booted. Or someone above you sees you as competition and wants you out. The reasons people get sacked are infinite and may bear no relation to your productivity.

When you consider all that, taking the less trodden path of entrepreneurship does not seem like so wild an idea. At least you won’t be stacking all your eggs in one basket or pinning all your hopes or your survival on one job.

Having many clients is one way to diversify risk. If one client hates you or is annoying, fine. You can drop that one. But that doesn’t mean you stop paying the bills. Perhaps we would all be better off as a nation of entrepreneurs.