The good: Everybody knows the good. Flexibility. We have time to do what we want to do, when we want to do it, how we want to do it. That’s all a really good thing.
The good: People who are 45 and older now have the opportunity to say, “You know what? I hated that job. For 30 years I hated it. Now I’m going to take who I am, repurpose it, and earn some income with it also.” That’s all good.
The good is that people in other countries that we used to call developing countries, their whole economy is shifting. We have people who used to make $3 a day who are now charging $3-4 an hour and even if they don’t work 40 hours, they are rich in their country!
We don’t have enough of it yet, but what we see coming is that that is going to shift the actual economies of the developing world. That is fabulous.
Now, on the opposite side of that coin leads us to the bad. The global marketplace.
The global marketplace is somewhat bad for US workers because what it means for those of us who are in the professional arena, things that we charge today, $50, 60, 150 an hour, there are people in this developing world who are equal to us or maybe even brighter charging $30 and $40 for the same work that we do.
What does it mean for us? The book that I wrote, Do The Hustle Without The Hassle, is about the online gig economy, which I think is the best kept secret. People know little bits and pieces of it, but really, it is where we’re going.
It gives corporations the opportunity to say, “Hey, I need a certain skill, I can get it right away, very quickly, I don’t even need a staff person to do it. I don’t need the whole recruiting system to do it.” They can source their entire talent needs with the click of a button.
If you don’t want to get into this whole digital work you’re going to miss out. Because from my vantage point, from all of the research that I’ve done, that’s where we’re headed.
Another thing that’s pretty bad is something that you may see in the newspaper every day. There’s this tension between the app developers and the workers, contractors, whatever you want to call these people. But there is a tension.
This is the ugly thing: Why is it that this gig economy thing is not totally new? This has been going on for a while, but it’s really starting to heat up. But why is it that we cannot get accurate statistics from our government? To me, that’s very, very ugly.
Because the Bureau of Labor Statistics, they have always said there are farm workers, non-farm workers, and businesses. Even when they did their supplement and they started to look at the contingency workforce, it was so convoluted that they didn’t even take into consideration people who were working off app. They didn’t take into consideration full-time freelance folks. It didn’t take into consideration this huge thing that we call the gig economy.
That’s very ugly to me. It’s very ugly to me that if you are laid off and can’t find a job and you decide you want to try your hand at something and you open up your business and you’re getting little gigs here and there, but you’re not making enough money so that you can survive, that your unemployment is in jeopardy.
This is the very, very, very ugly thing of the whole thing, is that people like you and I don’t know our worth. We don’t know our worth.