Chris Daily (00:08):
Welcome everybody. I'm Chris Daily, and we're here to have a conversation about the gig economy as part of our agile short, uh, series. With me are my buddies, jolly and Michael. And so what, what we're gonna talk about today is we're gonna talk about the gig economy and its impact on businesses. And the first thing we're gonna talk about is new business models, um, and how businesses could be impacted by new business models that might be introduced. Mike, do you wanna take kick us off here? Uh,
Michael Jebber (00:38):
Yeah. I, I, you know, there's, I know we're gonna cover what, four topics, I think, on this four subtopics right on, on the, on the, uh, gig economy and businesses. But, uh, this, this idea, you know, it's interesting, a little, a little chicken and egg, uh, you know, process on this thing with the new business models. Uh, and, and I know jolly, you, you've talked a lot about Uber and, and stuff in the past. Um, it's interesting. I think that I, when I think about it, I relate to some of the things I, we were talking about this a little earlier. I, I've seen, you know, uh, I think Covid was, was one of the things that kind of injected the opportunity for people to, to, to look at new models, to look at different models. They were forced to look at different models in a lot of cases, both businesses and individuals.
Some of the best food trucks we have around in our area right now for all the microbrews, when you go around at different places, were all started in 2020, you see, established 2020, right? So they went out when, during this timeframe when things were kind of held or skelter, and they decided to reinvest and, and, and reinvestigate and look at a, a new way, uh, to go, to go into business for themselves, uh, as individuals. Now, I know from the business side, uh, businesses have been, you know, the, the, the more creative and I would say adaptable cultures that we were dealing with, even pre covid. Um, we're really looking at this and looking for ways to try to reach more talent, to try to be more talent centric and make it make working, uh, more enjoyable. If you've got families, you've got things you need to do, reducing commute times, and what can you do to, to move with the world and, and still be productive given the fact that the world is constantly giving you new challenges every day and, and your market spaces and all the competitors in your market space. So, um, some of it was, you know, driven by, by business need and interest. Some of it was from innovation and creativity and thinking about new ways to do things. Some of it was just opportunity, uh, both from businesses, I think, and from individuals. Um, so I, I, I see it as kind of a chicken and egg, but I think there's, there's contributors on both sides of that coin.
Chris Daily (02:33):
Jolly Ranjan (02:34):
Yeah. And Mike brought up the, the Uber thing, and I remember Uber as one of the first gig economy companies out there, right? And that was we covid even. And the new business model is what did it for them, uh, where people used to rely on, uh, cap companies, uh, to move around a big city or even smaller cities, and the cap companies that operated using that were handed down to the drivers. Sometimes a humongous cost in big cities like New York, uh, where people had to take out mortgages and loans, uh, to buy these medallions. These companies like Uber and Lyft came in and changed the business model so much that everyone, I mean, people like us forced these companies and the local governments and the taxi companies to change their business model as well, because they had a inherent desire or advantage to maintain status quo. But that new business model cut through so much of society that local governments and federal governments were forced to change their practices. And it has been in many ways, uh, not all the time, but in many ways a win-win for the consumer and the people who work, uh, which we will now probably get to in the later topics today.
Chris Daily (03:57):
Yeah. How do you think, how do you think it changed the workforce in terms of, you know, uh, what, what did it do to them?
Jolly Ranjan (04:05):
Yeah, it's, yeah, yeah. It's kind of funny, right? And I, I was, I was, uh, talking to a friend of mine, uh, maybe a year ago about how when we all, I mean, let's step away from the example of Uber for a second and talk about how the IT industry works, right? We all used to go to work very often. Uh, we at least I used to go to work at least four days a week, , and most of the time we built really good friendships at work, right? I know, I know Mike through a previous engagement, I met Mike and became friends with him because I met him there in Cleveland and worked closely with him, right? So that is a huge advantage. And the conversation with my friend was how is that going to be now? What is your real incentive to be at that job or with that company when you are not making that deep relationships with the people around you?
Uh, is it gonna be transactional? Is it going to be the uber-like experience where you are going in and out, uh, when you offer, right? Uh, you, you, you jump into the workforce when you wanna, which is a great flexibility to have a great work life balance, and then you step out and that that culture or that cohesion that you built in a in a working in a company may not exist anymore. And that is kind of the downside of it. Uh, but from a work-life bands perspective, uh, I have to say it's amazing. Yeah.
Michael Jebber (05:34):
It, it really does have pros and cons, right? And, and it's funny 'cause some of the pros address cons of working in the, in more of the traditional fashion, uh, commute times. Uh, a lot of, if you think about it from a lean perspective, like wait, wait, time, waste, or, you know, the inability to, to do certain things because of the different types of things you had to do to get certain places. But like you said, the, the richness of the interactions, the richness of the connection, uh, which could impact innovation, it could impact, um, it could impact expediency, it could impact quality. Uh, some of those things are challenged in, in this new, in, in, in new dynamics, in new ways. So I think it's interesting every time when you see these, the gig economy, a aspect kind of latch on or become a part of, of an industry, or even to start a new industry, you know, it, it has its own challenges.
There's no, I don't think it's like utopia everywhere. I know a lot of people I talked to, uh, there, there were four companies I worked with, I think over the Covid period where I only met the people just a year ago, uh, or within six months for the first time face to face. And it was kind of neat. It's like there were different heights than what I thought, and they kind of looked different or carried themselves differently. It was, it is interesting from versus from being on a camera in a bedroom, right? Uh, mm-hmm. , which was different. And I, I think that there was a lot there. There's a lot of psychological challenges with this too, because a lot of people feel isolated. A lot of people feel very alone or, or kind of out on an island. Uh, if your per, if your personality type is a very much a collaborator or, or you work in groups and you, you, you enjoy that comradery.
Uh, if you're not that lone wolf worker, kind of the maverick, it, it's a challenge for you to, to work in, in this way. Uh, however, gig economies are even, you know, those are changing too. Gig economies are finding ways to get together locally. Maybe not all going to one big building downtown, but finding ways to pods to, to meet and do things and get more interaction face-to-face. It, it's definitely, uh, the flexibility part is definitely a benefit because it has the op, it has the opportunity, given support from the environment to really mold and become something really, really special for, for that group of people and really contextually relevant for the work that they're doing.
Chris Daily (07:49):
Yeah, I think the, I was, as you both were talking, I was thinking back about when was the first time I really recognized that there was a gig economy? And I think when it, when thinking back on it, I think, uh, you know, the first time I recognized it was Amazon, right? I mean, Amazon did not publish books. It didn't, all it did was sell books, right? So it connected the buyer with the person that had the book. And when I think about business models, right, and how it changes the workforce, it changes it. I mean, today, if I need a graphics artist, right, to do a piece for me, right? Like I needed a, I wanted to get our Agile Meridian logo converted a, a version that would look well with Minecraft with the stuff that I'm doing, right? I didn't go out to a traditional graphics firm to do that.
I went out to Fiverr and found a guy who was doing it, you know, that would do it for, you know, he did it, did it for 20 bucks. It would've taken me days to do it. He did it for 20 bucks and I got it 24 hours, right? Yeah. And I think it, it changes the workforce in that, you know, if there's something you're interested in, you can now, you can now go after and pursue that. And you're not tied to, well, what was your education? What's your employer gonna allow you to do? Right? I mean, you think about things like Etsy, right? Etsy has got, you can, you can buy books on Etsy, you can buy mugs, you can buy furniture, you can buy anything you want. It's all handcrafted. And it's typically small businesses, right? It's not the big, you know, producers of stuff. And I think that is what I see is it's kind of changing the workforce in that if you need somebody for a specific job, you can go get 'em at a reasonable price. And you don't have to contract with somebody and say, you know, you know, you don't have to spend thousands of dollars to get a video made. You can get one made for four or $500, right. By some, some, uh, photo video guy, right? That you never meet, you never talk to, right?
Michael Jebber (09:57):
The barrier to entry is so reduced. I was just talking to someone yesterday, uh, a gentleman who's a coach actually up in Glasgow, in Scotland, and we're both musicians. He saw the guitar in the back wall over here, over my shoulder. And we got to talking about that and saying, wow, 'cause, because 'cause he comes from the, the era and playing in the late eighties, early nineties, when I, when I played and thinking about it, I said, I'm just amazed. 'cause right now, the, the system behind me, I'm taking my old tapes and reel to reels and converting them down to digital. And I think about when I was, when I was young and doing this, how, how I had to get found by and go out and s seek and then get, get audience with a record company or a record label to even have a shot at being noticed or, or pre-published anywhere today I could sit down and write the music in my home, not go to a studio and then ship it out on the internet the minute I'm done.
And it, it's amazing, uh, the flexibility and the, the, the reduction to the barrier of entry into different places. And I think when you think of when, when businesses look at this, one of the things they should be considering is that if it reduces my barrier to entry, uh, then it probably reduces the barrier to entry for a competitor. And if I'm not prepared for that, it's likely that competitors can come from places where I'm, I'm not used to them coming from, or have never even thought of them coming from to be a competitor in my space. Because of those barriers have been reduced, uh, to, to very, to very, uh, very small or even no barrier at all in some cases.
Jolly Ranjan (11:26):
Yeah. And, and this increased competition, which is what you guys are saying to, uh, referring to is, is actually pretty good for the, for the consumer as well. Absolutely. Uh, I, I think this might have come up in a previous shot, uh, but there are hyper-local alternatives to Uber and Lyft, right? In, in a, in a big city like Washington, dc there are companies that just operate using the same model, but they are hyper-local, uh, to Washington dc and it has been really good for the customers there because the, the patterns are different. We can, we are more than happy to walk one block, uh, to get a pickup, uh, uh, along with a pool, uh, of people. There are so many alternatives that have come up, and it has been really for the consumer as well. Uh, sometimes it does drive into, uh, kind of a duopoly like Uber and Lyft, and that's probably not a good thing. Uh, but, uh, ultimately I think, uh, increased competition is good for, uh, the consumer.
Michael Jebber (12:27):
Absolutely. That's a good
Chris Daily (12:28):
Point. That's a good point. What about flexibility? We've talked about it a little bit, but from a business standpoint, how does it help you with Flex? How does it provide greater flexibility?
Michael Jebber (12:38):
Uh, I think, uh, it, it provides flexibility in many different ways. And, and to me, when I think about providing flexibility, that provides opportunity for innovation, um, and opportunity for, for efficiency gain and, and, and, and better flow and better value delivery. Anytime you can have a more flexible environment, you're less likely to be disrupted by vuca, uh, or, or the world or anybody, or a disruptor in your space that happens to pop up, uh, or, or become very powerful too. So that, that increased flexibility, I think is probably one of the most valuable things about it, is because it gives you that adaptability. It's a, it's a component to adaptability that is gonna benefit both the talent and any organization that they work for, whether it's their own organization or whether they work for as a, as a, as a gigger for somebody else in their business, in a more traditional business model.
Chris Daily (13:31):
Jolly Ranjan (13:32):
Yeah. That, that adaptability is, uh, key to combating vuca. And, and that's part of the disruptive method, Mike. I mean, we, we have, we all have worked on that for quite a few months now, and this, the adaptability and the flexibility that brings about the innovation from the workforce that already exists is going to be key for you. Uh, if you wanna, if you wanna get through this, oh, I would say turbulent times in many ways, right? I mean, we have been hearing about a recession for a while now. I dunno whether that's coming, whether it'll be a soft landing. I'm not an economic expert seeing
Michael Jebber (14:10):
A lot of more people request, uh, request, can you get my e can you get my resume out there? So yeah, there's, there's definitely a lot of pressures right now on that.
Jolly Ranjan (14:18):
Yeah. Yeah. And being adaptable, uh, at the work workplace and in your personal life is gonna be key to writing this out. Uh, whatever format it takes, I dunno how bad it's gonna be, but what are form
Chris Daily (14:31):
It takes. Good. Well, we're at time here. It is about 17 minutes. We want to try and maybe achieve our first, uh, short, under 20 minutes. So we're gonna go ahead real
Michael Jebber (14:44):
Short, agile, short. Right? Exactly.
Chris Daily (14:46):
Real short, agile, short. Right. Well, thank you guys for getting together with me this afternoon and talking about this. Um, for those of you that are watching, check out our other Agile shorts on YouTube. Be sure you like 'em. Um, next time we're gonna continue on talking about disruption and how, uh, you can help in ensuring that your future is not gonna be disrupted. With that, we'll see everybody later. Thanks. Thank you, Chris. Have a great day. Thanks.