Shared economy or collaborative consumption is not a new concept. Your ride in Uber or Lyft or maybe your stick with Airbnb is a good example of peer to peer collaborative consumption. What makes this concept interesting is the ability of the shared economy based companies to offer simplified yet delightful experiences to consumers. This type of easy services driven concept is enabled by technology and is silently making a profound impact on society – leading a Social Change.
Obviously Social change is actually a procedure of major changes over a duration of period in pattern of behavior, cultural values and norms of society. These changes have long-term effect on the society. So, let’s know how these new age companies working on old style of Shared economy are helping bring a Social Change:
1. Socially we have been moving from Ownership to Sharing: Should you closely examine these companies, they neither offer any technology to help you nor they provide direct services. The delightful experiences are delivered by someone who is sharing the products or services along with you. This is helping individuals to move from full ownership to your sharing model thus opening to unknown group of people from across the globe. This mode of sharing can’t be seen as selling as the provider of services is allowing you to take part in something that they completely own & probably use as part of their daily lives. The better people share more they grow & more they grow the better they share. In this way we have been moving from I & you to definitely we & us resulting in a harmonized happy world. This is actually the basis of the brand new direction and a paradigm shift that is leading a new way of life – a Social Change.
2.We are trusting the unknown: Each time you consume something through the shared economy model you trust the unknown. Yes you will find reviews regarding the services you are wanting to consume but you have to trust reviews from people that you don’t know and hence it really is trusting the unknown. Solidarité from one area of the globe are trusting people from another portion of the globe – that they can could have never visited. Imagine this – you may have planned a holiday trip in Chicago and will also be travelling through the comforts of your property in Colombo. You have booked a room through Airbnb and know nothing regarding your host in Chicago. The only real way to obtain information are the great reviews regarding the host. You continue to go ahead, finish a great stay with the host and present them 5 star reviews. This is really happening and happening around the globe with a pace faster than your reading speed. Phenomenal. We being a Society are prepared to trust more & take more risks to get global citizens. Looking more optimistically, this type of mutual respect & trust is succeeding greater than the traditional model of consumption. This capability to trust the unknown is challenging well known brands. It is actually which makes them innovate and win consumer’s trust according to improved services or value if not they clearly face extinction. Our company is sharing more, we have been also caring more and that we are trusting more as being a Society.
3. We have been embracing change: Whenever you go for services with the Shared Economy model you are moving through the traditional established to a completely new style of consumption. The existing models are more mature and it’s easy to choose the existing and trusted means of doing things but the world is embracing this change. When the growth of companies like Uber or Airbnb is any indicator then it’s clear that world is moving almost in one direction and that is certainly to go from traditional system to an alternative age model. Whenever you look at leading surveys you will notice that Airbnb is booking more rooms than Hilton or Uber operates in more than 250 cities and has better market valuation when compared to many leading Airlines in the world. This is not a surprise whatsoever. With proliferation of mobile connectivity & internet we will have this transformation being embraced by way of a larger population thus ensuring a deeper & more significant influence on the society.
4. Our company is supporting Social entrepreneurship: Imagine this – an older lady in UK has a 3 room apartment near city center and she doesn’t wish to put it on long lasting (1 year or more) rent as her distant family visits her a couple of times in a year. Simultaneously she needs to monetize real estate investment. She wants to meet people and doesn’t desire to be lonely. With the shared economy model she could do this all at the simplicity of few clicks. Everything that she must do is to have the details uploaded on Airbnb or similar portals she trusts. She will not only monetize the investments but will also have the ability to meet people from diverse backgrounds. No requirement to browse through the hassles of contracting with every tenant or hire staff to perform the show, no walking around authorities, no necessity of posting costly ads, no follow ups and no reason to engage realtors. In this particular new model she can run her business in simple yet very effective way. Once the society starts supporting its constituents the progress is inevitable. The complete world- well almost- is originating together to aid you for making you successful. That’s social entrepreneurship.
5. And we are improving the Environment: This one is clear and understandable but has the most crucial impact on our future. Whenever you opt for car-sharing, bike-sharing or even a ride-sharing you happen to be actually helping to reduce carbon footprints, you happen to be saving fuel and everything associated with it. Instead of buying new stuff our company is re-utilizing and monetizing existing assets by sweating them that is always better than throwing and purchasing new. Shared economy model helps you to reuse stranded assets like cars, bikes to vacant rooms along with toys which otherwise sits idle occupying space and are seldom used. Underutilized goods turn into waste quickly and this model helps eliminate that. Using this method we are helping ease pressure on environment by lowering the volume of old products which are discarded or thrown and in addition decreasing the escalating demands of brand new goods. Increase this reduced traffic congestion, savings because of lower consumption of energy hawiho resources and it will be possible to clearly see some great benefits of this new model on our Society as a whole. Our company is helping ourselves and the future of the society as a whole.
As you would have observed it comes with an inevitable change we all are going through- we have been sharing more, our company is accepting more, we have been embracing new, we are becoming different and our company is making tomorrow better. This is undoubtedly a big paradigm shift that can slowly cause a Social revolution with much more lasting impact than current technological advancements.