The digital revolution is turning the global economy on its head. The most valuable workers in today’s labor market—the millennials creating billion-dollar empires with laptops and a case of La Croix—aren’t wearing white collars or blue collars and they certainly don’t own anything in pinstripes. The most coveted employees of our new economy wear no collar at all. Meanwhile, for consumers, more often than not, one doesn’t even have to put on a shirt to shop: You can purchase just about anything sitting in your pajamas in your bedroom.
This informality is indicative of our new digital environs. With “blue-collar” jobs increasingly displaced by automation and international trade, many have turned to informal platform-based employment. Gigs like Uber, TaskRabbit and Fiverr offer no contracts and no benefits, and for all intents and purposes, with them, the app is the boss.
The very nature of value is changing. In the 21st century, data has become the coin of the realm, and at the moment it is an appreciating commodity. At current rates we are not far from the day when the information a single individual brings to a platform is worth more than a barrel of oil.
The digital revolution is exciting and intimidating at the same time, and the conversation on its economic consequences must be inclusive. The No Collar Economy: Exponential Change and the Digital Revolution, authored by Samuel George and Felipe Buitrago, highlights the importance of the digital economy in an entertaining, multi-faceted way.
So lose the tie, find the hot spot, and join us in the No Collar Economy.