days start early and because I am semi-retired, I end my day around 2pm. At
this time I either get some errands done, write, work out or just take a
well-deserved nap... oh, and I do look forward to the nap choice! On this
particular day, after a mile swim, I decided to try to take a short nap and
while settling into nap mode I checked my email.
An Email Request
saw an email from a guy named Sean from LA. He too was an Uber driver and was
requesting a phone conversation for a problem he was seeing out in “Rideshare
Land." He apparently read some of my posts and wanted some feedback
on an issue. I was intrigued and so I set up a time to chat.
only wanted 3 minutes of my time, so he definitely did not know me at all. I
don’t know how to have a 3-minute conversation! We ended up talking for 40
minutes. Sean was a college graduate and had a degree in civil
engineering, however he never embarked on his career after graduating in
2010. Sean started UBERing after college and 8 years later, he still is.
He has combined UBERing with other gigs to create a nice income, including
Airbnb, engineering projects, a resume consulting biz and selling residential
real-estate. What Sean wanted to discuss was, What’s next after UBERing? Sean
mentioned that he has a bunch of friends that drive for Uber & Lyft that
are in his situation, having never launched their careers after college and
instead choosing to Ride-share. Now, years later, they're all asking
themselves: "Now what?"
I'd never, ever thought about this situation. I mean, who knew there were
drivers out there facing this dilemma? Most drivers are part-timers,
college kids, ex-cabbies (not a happy bunch) or people like me facing the ends
of their careers and looking for something interesting to do. Don’t get
me wrong, I love ride-sharing and engaging with people all day long, but I
never realized that there were people who never pursued a more traditional
career path first or abandon the careers they went to college for.
The “gig” economy
was very sincere about not wanting to pursue his engineering degree and instead
stick with his various “gigs." But his friends, many with graduate
degrees, seemed clueless as to next steps. Sean wanted to help and saw a
possible additional gig he could pursue: consulting with drivers about their
next options. My question was, Are you picking my brain for ideas, or just want
honest generic feedback? I’m not sure the gig economy was ever meant to
replace professional or tradesmen careers. I always thought that “gigs” were more
supplemental, something to do on the side… apparently my thinking was off.
wanted to fly me out to do a presentation on my career path and what has worked
for me, but I was concerned about protecting my ideas. I am still in shock that
people would UBER before starting a career; I realize Ride-sharing is fun
and you can earn a living, easier than starting a career I suppose, but then
like these folks you can get stuck!
talked with Sean about some things I do while UBERing, how you can definitely
pursue other gigs in combination with driving. His resume and real estate biz
work really well with the Ride-share economy, but you need to be really chill on
how you handle the conversation with passengers. No one wants to be hard sold
on something when they are trying to go from point A to point B! Not to
mention, UBER and LYFT would never tolerate that kind of rider
experience. I mentioned to Sean that I felt he was on to something and he
should continue to explore it, and that if he wanted me to come out and present
to a group and pay me for my time then I would be open to it. Why wouldn’t
I be? Isn’t this what the Gig economy is all about?