The Sharing Economy

The Sharing Economy Is Growing

I think we are in a really exciting time for all generations as the sharing economy is growing. In this post, let’s look at companies that allow you to work remotely instead of for one employer.

Traditionally, you would graduate from college and be at the same job for 30 years. Consequently, you would then retire at age 65. You would then go down to sit on the beach in Florida until you die. I think that is changing. I see both baby boomers and millennials getting remote, freelance jobs.

Uber: The ‘Work When You Want To’ Revolution

Look at Uber. The majority of my drivers are either split into two categories, one, retired and do it for extra money. In fact, in my hometown there’s a gentleman that used to be a dentist that is retired that Ubers and has the nicest Acura I have ever seen. It’s got to be an $80,000 or $100,000 four door sedan. I’m a very tall guy. I can sit in the back with no problem, leather interior, gorgeous car. He was a dentist and he does it because it forces him to get out of the house and it brings in extra income for his family in retirement.

The other group that I see in working with Uber are people who already have a 9 to 5. They are picking up extra ways to make money at night and in evenings and on weekends that can also bring in additional income. Hopefully they’re not using it to keep up with the Jones’s. Hopefully they’re using it to pay down debt or to increase their savings rates.

The Traditional Model is No More

But this idea that you can work when you want to, where you want to, is very fascinating. I think if you blend this to the tiny house movement and minimalist movement. You could live wherever you want.

You go back to the traditional model of getting a job at the same company for 30 years, a lot of our parents generation, the baby boomers, stayed within the same town for the majority of their life or were forced to move to towns that they didn’t find appealing only to continue to have that job. That does not sound like something I’m interested in at all.

You also have companies like Upwork and Freelancer.com that allow people to work from anywhere in order to make a living. They work on their own times. The job turns on when they want. They can accept a job when they want, and when they don’t, they can turn off their phone or the app on their phone and they do not need to go work.

Freelance Opportunities May Help Your Retirement Goals

I look at my dad who want to retire and I think that him and his wife could if they were willing to do some type of freelance work, but they didn’t make great savings choices during their working years  (not there fault, job changes and layoffs and low paying jobs), so now they are strapped for cash in retirement and they do not want to get a part time job at a physical location where they have to drive in.

I think the idea of working remote, being a freelancer, traveling to their grandkids’ house, they can turn on and off when their grandkids are at school, that flexibility is really appealing and I wonder why we don’t see more of this. To wrap this up, does anybody have any business ideas that would help the sharing economy? If they do, please contact me, I would love to explore these ideas with you.

Keeping Up With The Jones; Will Break The Bank

The Consumption Economy

I listened to a podcast that my friend made. It’s called Everyday is Saturday. Sam is out of Cincinnati, Ohio. He talked about how recently he watched a documentary called “Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things”. Sam had a large house, 3,000 square feet, four bedroom, four bath. He has four daughters so he does have a large enough family to justify that square footage, but he is putting his house on the market in order to downsize so that he can be more financially stable.

Keeping Up With The Jones’: Not Being Satisfied

I recently watched this documentary (Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things) with my wife and she thought I was absolutely crazy, which is true. The opposite of the minimalist idea is keeping up with the Jones’. The majority of our culture revolves around keeping up with the Jones’ and not being satisfied with what you have.

I liked the documentary because it explored how these guys were able to live on less money, be able to travel and be able to spend more time with family/friends and not be a slave to their jobs, or for that matter, to money.

I fantasize about the idea of moving into a tiny house and paying cash and not having a mortgage payment, starting a couple of new companies which I’m working on (more soon) and I’ll have to start writing about the new ventures, quitting my job and being able to have more time with the family to where I’m only working 30 hours a week instead of 80 hours a week.

The Most Important Thing: Spending Time With Family

I currently work for a large corporation where I’m on the road all the time in an industry that is very macho, egotistical, and loves to show off materialistic items. It’s in the finance industry. It is all about keeping up with the Jones’ and being better than the Jones’. It sometimes makes me sick. N o wait, all the time.

After watching that documentary I spend evenings after the kids and my wife go to bed thinking. I think about that tiny house and being able to move it all over the United States. I’d show the kids different cultures and raise the kids in different cities. They would learn how to start different businesses. My kids would understand how to look for certain opportunities and how to gauge the market. I’d teach them how to run and read a balance sheet. They’d even learn how to read a profit and loss statement. Those are the things that I think about.

Keeping Up With The Jones’ Will Get You Nowhere

As of right now in the spring of 2017 I am realizing and conscious of the fact that keeping up with the Jones’ will get you absolutely nowhere, in fact probably broke, and I’m refocused now on dialing it down and being more of a minimalist. How about you? Does anybody else struggle with this?