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Are You Done, Yet? .vs. The Rise of the Gig

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Joined: 20 Mar 2006
Posts: 1273
Location: Kent (East Hill), WA

PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2012 8:54 am    Post subject: Are You Done, Yet? .vs. The Rise of the Gig Reply with quote

Today I was reading an article about Finnish Startups...high tech businesses in Finland.

I suggested they call them FinishUps.

Which makes me think, aren't there a lot of situations where we want people to get off their duff, leave adult childhood and get the job done.

The perpetual grad student, the eternal entry level employee...and the startup that is always wanting more "seed capital" 10 years after conception. (And here I am guilty as well).

Is it fear of failure? Maybe business formation should be more like speed dating. Find someone with some money. Do the project...and move on!

So, we should only fund FinishUps. Here's the dough...ok...Where Is It?!
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Joined: 17 Mar 2006
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Location: Oregon

PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2012 12:49 pm    Post subject: The rise of the gig Reply with quote

The rise of the gig

In an era where a career has become more of a careen, people are trying to find those little niches where they can turn their skills, time and insight, into a little extra ready cash.

There's a premium on low start up costs and low burn rate. The economics of 5 being the new 10 (see other post), requires an attention to detail to make the case. People start doing home repair for others, open a food cart, start selling their leather goods online, or start selling in antique malls.

The gig should always pay for itself, and a bit more. It has the prospect of increasing one's skill and reputation. There's some chance it might somehow have a larger payoff, through some chip-shot to thermal to space shuttle to mars alignment of serendipity.


When I listen to your advice, I think of poker, or rather of roulette. I hear it as you saying, "c'mon, bet it all on red already."

Meanwhile, there's, which seems to satisfy both of our concerns. It's hard for me to dismiss the idea that the importance of this kind of economic activity will grow in the coming years.
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Joined: 20 Mar 2006
Posts: 1273
Location: Kent (East Hill), WA

PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2012 10:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If we could get the fixed costs of living down to nil -- truly free -- then why not.

Who wouldn't want to be able to work when they want, at what they love, and only need to get some Wuffi into order to have feedback as to whether it pleased the crowd.

At work right now we use some new project management software, AtTask, that calls itself "democratic" (small d, no, it wasn't based on the strategic planning of George McGovern). Projects are made up of tasks. But tasks can put out there in public for those who want to grab task and complete it. Anyone can also create a task and do it themselves, assign it to someone, or put it out there To Be Done when someone wants to do it.

I think -- wow, there's how our whole economy should work. It has always been my contention that of all the Utopias, the closest to what seems to make most people happy is the profitable mid-sized business, that has enough money to reward people, and create perks like cool rec rooms but also has productive work to offer them.

Working for a business in a stable well paying job is in some sense like working for Free. If you see yourself as staying in the job for a long time, you essentially do the work, spend some money but also save a lot of it. In some sense it's the opposite of a "gig" where you must do the gig to eat and stay alive. I guess it's more like the Floor from our other thread, only a very high, raised floor.

So you have this very high floor, that provides a comfortable lifestyle, but you don't want the old Command and Control management. You don't want to be locked in under a boss or hierarchy that takes the juice and leaves you a dried up hulk with nothing to show but maybe a house and a 401k. At the same time, you don't want the high risk of going it entirely on your own (or the lack, or the scrambling for cash rather than doing good work).

Work has to be done...people need to justify the High AtTask type system coupled to a High Floor would be a sort of Utopia. But then again, McLuhan says, all Utopias are nostalgic. Maybe we're just creating the idea business -- circa 1986, based on memories and small improvements.

A real breakthrough is needed.

Lately I have been thinking about America as a tiger. We are often called a tiger...roaring across the economic tiger back in the 1960s. Our detractors often called us a "paper tiger"...not willing to to be ignored. I have been thinking that for the last 30 years, our people have been like the tigers in Siegfried & Roy. Dressds up tigers, put into a Las Vegas Show and commanded by guys in sequins. The once free American tiger, caged up and commanded. But look what happened there. After years of being in a "show", the beast said "Hey, wait a minute. I'm a tiger. I don't do sequins." and then he ate Roy. Or Siegfried. I can't remember which. That is America. 2012. A well fed tiger, stuck in a sequined collar, in a cage, on display in a Las Vegas show...and oh, so ready to bite...
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