In the last few years, we have seen major changes to our economy. There have been many salary cuts and companies have been downsizing dramatically. More and more educated people are coming out of school ready to work, but they can’t find jobs. The birth of the gig economy, which is just the more formal term for a side hustle, came out of necessity, and as a response to the lack of security that could be found in a 9-5, traditional, job.
“The birth of the gig economy… came out of necessity”
According to Forbes (https://www.forbes.com/sites/tjmccue/2018/08/31/57-million-u-s-workers-are-part-of-the-gig-economy/#330f8b577118), “more than one third (36 percent) of U.S. workers are in the gig economy, which works out to a very large number of approximately 57 million people.”
An article in Fast Company stated that LinkedIn data found that 71 percent of employees report having a side hustle for extra income. In the same report, it was found that about 36 percent find success pursuing a passion-heavy project within the gig economy. (https://www.fastcompany.com/90279105/your-12-month-guide-to-building-your-side-hustle-this-year).
For many, these side jobs were meant to be temporary. Whether it was for a short period of time while they were in between jobs, after a layoff, or that they just needed more flexibility than a 9-5 job could provide. During these periods of time, people freelance and bounce from job to job on a short-term, contract basis. We have definitely seen a shift where the younger generation has accepted that stability may not be possible. Arun Sundararajan, a professor at New York University’s Stern School of Business supported that statement by saying, “There is a lot more volatility in the world of work today than there was 20 or 30 years ago.” (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/business/wp/2017/07/03/side-hustles-are-the-new-norm-heres-how-much-they-really-pay/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.79bb4fb92327)
“There is a lot more volatility in the world of work today than there was 20 or 30 years ago...”
Technology is a very big contributing factor to this shift as well. With a smartphone and data, we are able to complete most of our tasks, which means flexibility in where, and more importantly, when the task will get done. We often think that technology is what makes the first step and creates the shift, but very often, technology is developed because the need has been created. This just means that when paying attention to trends, the top developers saw the shift happening from a mile away. They could see that people were taking on leadership roles in their own lives and starting their own businesses. It is the rise of the entrepreneur!
Time, more than ever, is seen as a currency. We will often exchange a traditional job, for a contract that allows us more control over our schedule and the dollar value put on our time. Millennials, in particular, like to experience more. They prefer to be valued for their time and to do more with it outside of work and conventional work hours. These roles are no longer being seen as just something to fill in the gap created when moving from one traditional job to another. Young, ambitious, talented and spirited people are rising up and taking ownership over their very own path to wealth, and re-defining what success looks and feels like.
This shift has also created a very interesting opportunity to give a new meaning to taking on a leadership role. People are mostly using the gig economy as a temporary solution while they wait for their opportunity to jump back into the rat race. But this means they often miss out on the best part about it, the many doors that are opened to create a full-time, full-on business. These freelance and short term tasks don’t have to be just a side hustle. In fact, most people that have a side hustle don’t actually end up making that much extra money. They also tend to not see it as a sustainable replacement for the more traditional route with the 9-5 job.
The gig economy is growing to the point where you can become the entrepreneur you've always wished to be. The tools and technologies are out there, you just have to spot the leadership opportunities.
“You can become the entrepreneur you've always wished to be…”
And the absolute best part is that so many of these systems are already being put into place. Look at what Airbnb is doing. They are creating an opportunity to run your own real estate empire. They do so much of the work for you. Platforms and systems have been put in place to facilitate quick communication, increase productivity and organization. All they are waiting for is for you to step up and take the lead, to be your own boss and have complete control.
The model that Airbnb uses, providing a platform for entrepreneurs to manage their own business, has since been emulated in many different companies. Etsy and Udemy are two examples of companies that bring together the entrepreneurial spirit and provide you with the tools to create, advertise and market your own skills. According to Business Insider,(https://www.businessinsider.com/etsy-valuation-688-million-2012-5) Etsy is worth almost $700 million dollars. Like Airbnb, it only charges its sellers about 3 percent to use their services. This makes both the sellers/users happy, and of course, Etsy with its millions are not complaining.
Udemy leverages something only slightly different. It leverages skills and teaching. The company boasts that some of their instructors have made several thousands of dollars per month, off one course. There is an emergence of new skills being leveraged, and learning how to maximize these skills so you can go into Autopilot Mode. This is how you can create a very successful business in this ever-changing gig economy. You should ask yourself: “how can I create a company that I can eventually walk away from, that will continue to make me money?” And the best way to do that is to make sure you aren’t dependent on how many hours a day you can give to get the job done.
“Companies like Airbnb and Udemy are now providing entrepreneurs with the platforms and tools necessary to help them manage their own businesses...”
In other words, the business must be something that will eventually, if not right away, be able to work without you. If you look at the examples of the companies mentioned above, that is exactly what has been done. The founders have created a way to make their product make money for them without having to put in the work themselves on a day-to-day basis.
John Frazer - How The Gig Economy Is Reshaping Careers For The Next Generation - forbes.com (https://www.forbes.com/sites/johnfrazer1/2019/02/15/how-the-gig-economy-is-reshaping-careers-for-the-next-generation/#179d1ffd49ad)
Founding Partner of Marcos Jacober | Six Figure University Who Am I? Hi, I’m Marcos Jacober a Brazilian immigrant, an investor, author, international speaker, and teacher. I moved to the US in 1998 with only a dream and $100 in my pocket and worked many blue collar jobs before saving enough to invest in real estate, but I lost everything in the crash of 2008. After learning about Tax Liens and Tax Deeds, I was able to finalize hundreds of property deals. Today I am an authority in the real estate business, with more than 800 transactions in my portfolio. I devote my time to being a father of my two beautiful children as well as helping thousands of individuals across the world who have dreamt of starting their real estate investment career here in the US.