The Social Hitch Hikers Economy

by Jay Deragon on 01/17/2013

hitchhikerHitchhiking (also known as thumbing or hitching) is a means of transportation that is gained by asking people, usually strangers, for a ride.

Today the means of hitch hiking is surfing the web and using people or things to get from point A to B. Social hitch hiking is getting connected to people and information through others. The rides are through people and their networks of people or information.

Social hitch hiking looks like this:

  1. You want to get to someone on Linkedin for whatever reason and they aren’t a 1st degree connection. So you find someone in your network that can introduce you to their contact so you can engage for whatever reason.
  2. You are working on a project and need relevant information to complete. You go on the web and find resources that have that information. You “connect” to them or directly to their information via the “network”.

Social Hitch Hiking also represents the means for finding work in the freelance economy. New research shows the job deficit isn’t just a result of the down economy. Thanks to technology and a globalized market, businesses have changed the way they hire and how organizations create value. The trend is to “hire hitch hikers”.

Naval Ravikant predicted that in the future, people would wake up, see a flood of jobs, pick one, and go do that thing. For some workers, that reality is already close. Studies show that as much as 40 percent of the labor force is freelancing or contracting in some way right now. According to the recently released US Jobs Report only 47.6 percent of people are employed full time.

Nilofer Merchant states: The freelance revolution, the rise of flextime, the proliferation of virtual teams and offices–all of these trends and more add up to a big shit: “work” is increasingly freed from jobs.

The Freelance Economy Promotes Social Hitch Hiking

The Social Era represents differences in how organizations work and how people find meaningful work. As the BIG lose market share the smaller network to gain market share. Work becomes more about knowing your purpose, strengths, opportunities and how to use networks. The BIG can remain BIG at less cost if they too know their purpose and match theirs with the purpose of freelance networks.

Social Hitch Hikers will learn to easily find free “rides to work”, even when the sources of work change, by purposely leveraging their networks with their value.

Work is no longer a job but an adventure.

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