The Gig Economy is a Total Strugglebus


I just want to own this today: The gig economy is a total strugglebus.

I know a lot of people on this bus — folks who live for creativity, innovation, vision, purpose, and a willingness to take imaginative risks. But this bus is also a challenge. The projects and people behind them are not often adequately resourced.

Money is obviously the paramount challenge. But also, when you try to solve that problem. . . are there adequate emotional and relational resources for discussing the tangible financial challenges in the first place? I was speaking with a friend yesterday who mentioned that money conversations are taboo in the United States in ways that they are not around the world. People talk about their salaries quite openly in other places around the globe, in large part, to ensure that equity is upheld.

But there are cultural setbacks here to talking openly about the need for funding. People just don’t do that. Or they don’t do that easily. 

Meanwhile, the gig economy constantly requires people to demonstrate and prove that their work is worth funding. So how do people talk about these challenges openly without guilt or shame — either the people trying to make a living this way or the affirmative audiences from whom support is requested?

I don’t think our larger cultures know how to talk about this.

Folks on this bus, major solidarity. You and your work are worth it. Truly.

To all of us, it’s pretty clear that we value these types of work. (Think of the people you laud as innovative. I’m sure you already have a number of specific people in mind.) How do we create a better economy for our most innovative endeavors and leaders?

Renee Roederer

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