gig economy

Gig Economy 1, Hillary Clinton 0

Call it the era of sharing, age of collaborative consumption or the gig economy, regulators and Hillary Clinton calling out the innovations of companies like Uber, Lyft, Etsy etc. for anything besides their ability to imagine the greatest economic shift since the industrial revolution, is just foolish.

I’m sure when the assembly line first rolled out, people were as intimidated by the power of automation as it no doubt left them feeling threatened. In fact history tells us that that period of massive technological disruption brought with it enormous clashes between classes and even gender as the definition of “work” extended for the first time far beyond the home.

Today as entrepreneurialism abounds everywhere from boardrooms to living rooms, “work” is just again finding new homes outside of traditional settings. This is of course breeding discomfort from traditional business owners and politicians alike.

Billee Howard Gig Economy

Yet those of us in the know realize that regardless of what we call the economic phenomenon unfolding before us, it is something that is here to stay. And while worker benefits and other issues are of course important, they will in time be resolved, as the power of the groundswell beneath us cannot be halted.

As history has shown, regulation will just need to catch up to innovation. And it will, as it always does…but sure does make for a meaty campaign issue while that paradigm shift occurs doesn’t it?

I for one choose not to wait for 2016, and proudly cast my vote for the new age of WE.

Billee Howard is Founder + Chief Engagement Officer of Brandthropologie, a cutting edge communications consulting firm specializing in helping organizations and individuals to produce innovative, creative and passionate dialogues with target communities, consumers and employees, while blazing a trail toward new models of artful, responsible, and sustainable business success. Billee is a veteran communications executive in brand development, trend forecasting, strategic media relations, and C-suite executive positioning. She has a book dedicated to the study of the sharing economy called WeCommerce due out in Fall 2015 as well as a blog entitled the #HouseofWe dedicated to curating the trends driving our economy forward. You can read more about “WE-Commerce: How to Create, Collaborate, and Succeed in the Sharing Economy” right here!

Photo credit: Getty Images & CNBC 


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