Collaborative consumption is the socio-economic system supported by network technologies that enable you to share and exchange assets, from space to skills to goods, within peer communities, in a profitable way, that was never possible before. This system empowers you to be true to yourself by doing what you want when you want with what you have. A system that has been around since the Stone Age, based on old marketplace principles that are only updated for the new millennia.
You are demanding services now. Your demand makes you more flexible to what it will take to get what you want. You’ll consider things in return that were never imagined before.
Network technology via mobile allows for the delivery of these services in real time and voilà, you’re sharing in it. Think Airbnb, TaskRabbit and Uber, which are feeding your needs instantly. These businesses even empower you to seize opportunities to create your own businesses and they’re redefining the entrepreneurial landscape.
Against the odds, community markets of old are regaining their space at the cost of bigger chains, where bartering of goods and services are available at a ‘negotiable’ price. An exciting culture of ‘what’s mine is yours, for a fee’ …
Assets are shared and used like never before; caring and trust are rivaling older currencies like money and precious metals. The conscious consumer is aware of the true costs of life and doing business and want to reduce the collective footprint by sharing more and producing less. Reputation will be your most valuable asset.
‘Value’ now is defined to be more than just ownership but a cumulative experience utilising all available resources. Key benefits feeding this growth for you are that if you own; you can make money from underused assets; you can rent and pay less but enjoy the same value; you can make a sustainable difference as fewer resources are needed to produce more stuff; you can share in a community that fosters and thrives on trust; and you can experience more and differently from before.
It’s time to start caring about sharing. Are you ready to be part of the ‘villages of old’ where you can trust your neighbour as a fellow entrepreneur to share your assets to make a living?
Author: Stanford Payne CA(SA) is an ICF-accredited executive and business coach