Is Entrepreneurship for Me?
I never seriously considered becoming an entrepreneur or startup founder while growing up, or even after I got my MBA . (Sure, I watch Shark Tank, but who doesn 't?)
But when I started to discuss a new product idea with my now co-founder, we truly believed that we had come up with an innovative solution to a common problem. Soon, I found myself reading more and more about new product ideas, tech startups, and about the history of successful tech companies that I love such as Airbnb and Uber. I was instantly hooked and ready to pursue a tech startup of my own.
Story from Founder
After living in a two-bedroom apartment for the past seven years, I was looking to finally make the move from renter to homeowner. I bought my first house in 2017, and was very excited to start my new journey as a homeowner. But once I moved in, I quickly realized that I had a long to-do list of things that I wanted to accomplish to make this house my own. This list included simple tasks such as: cleaning, unpacking, hanging paintings, fixing lights and assembling furniture. Since I was working full time, I did not have much time to do everything by myself, and needed help. My friend suggested that I join the NextDoor app to start looking for help and also to connect with my neighborhood, and learn about my local community.
As I was exploring the app, I only saw expensive ads from professional companies. I just paid an arm and a leg to close on my house, so I didn 't want to break the bank just to get the little things done. I went to different platforms such as Angie 's List, Thumbtack and TaskRabbit, but I mainly saw expensive ads from professional companies registered as full-time service providers. All in all, I was not convinced that I needed to pay this kind of money for small trivial jobs.
Around the same time, I noticed a thread on NextDoor that was posted by one of my neighbors:
I am a single dad and I lost my job recently. I am very good at housework and can fix anything possible in house. If you guys need any help then please let me know.
I was not sure how good he would be, and if could trust him, so I took a screenshot of the post and did not reply to the thread. After a few days, I saw a reply to the thread:
This app should not be used for soliciting and we should not post such requests on NextDoor.
After a few hours the post was deleted. I was surprised to see this reply and wondered why it is so difficult to find work. I went back and checked the screenshot on my phone, and saw the phone number of the guy. His name was John. I called John. He talked to me super nicely on the phone, and he was so humbled that I reached out to him. He came to my house the very next day and completed everything at half the price of what was quoted to me by the other platforms. He did an excellent quality job.
Within the next few weeks, John got a job and was back on his feet. We are still in touch to this day, and he still helps me with any work needed at my house. I have learned many skills related to home maintenance from him that I now do by myself to save some money.
This entire experience made me believe that there is no platform that connects folks who are looking for help with the Johns who are looking for work. The primary ads we see are from expensive professionals. I saw a similar trend on a Facebook job group, where every day someone would post that he/she is looking for work but cannot do a full-time job, as they have kids and other obligations, and can only work as per what their schedule allows.
This motivated me to launch...AtoZgigs! AtoZgigs is a peer-to-peer gig-sharing platform where anyone can connect with anyone else in their community, and get work done much faster and more affordably. Rather than being a registered full-time company, you can take jobs based on your location and what your schedule allows. For the customer or Gig Giver, it is the perfect solution as you can get trivial jobs done more affordably, and take advantage of connecting with your neighbors.
You may meet your John, who can teach you some skills too, which can help you in long run.
The Growing Gig Economy
The gig economy, or sharing economy, is growing rapidly. Here are a few facts that I have recently read from various articles about the gig economy:
- Sharing economy is estimated to grow to $335 billion by 2025
- 54% of population uses some sort of sharing-economy service or product today
- Millennial generation (age 25-39) most likely to participate in the gig economy
- The growth in freelance workers is nearly doubling every year.
- Venture capitalists have invested $24 billion into sharing economy since 2010
My Problem Hiring a Painter
After I bought my rental property, I needed to paint the interior of the house fairly quickly so that I could list it for rent. I searched online for a while, then I made 4 or 5 phone calls to get estimates and some basic information on availability and scheduling.
There were 2 problems with my experience here.
1. By the time I received my last bid, the entire day had gone by, and I thought that the time to research process should have been way quicker.
2. To me, all of the prices still seemed really high, and I was worried that I may be over-paying for this job. Also, how many calls do I really have the time to make? (Goes back to problem #1!)
Then I realized that this was all being done backwards. I should be able to post the paint job that I needed, on my terms, at my preferred price and schedule. Then all other painters in the area should come to me with their bids.
This motivated me to join AtoZgigs, a peer-to-peer gig sharing platform that connects users with each other to get work done fast and easy. It 's also about building a community and helping out a neighbor in the area.
Who Needs AtoZgigs?
A while back, I received the following text message from my house
Hello good morning. I am the cleaning lady who cleaned 2 years ago before your wedding. Checking if you need me to clean again. Elia
Before replying, I stopped to think about this message from her perspective. I realized that she was just looking for more work, opportunities. And she quite possibly sent a similar text message to ALL of her past customers! (What a laborious way to market yourself!)
AtoZgigs is exactly what Elia needs. With our new mobile app, she can quickly check which cleaning gigs have been posted in her area, and choose which ones to take. This will give her more opportunities than ever before, while also saving her tons of time. Plus, she can discover a whole host of other types of gigs that are available in her area, and start earning extra money.
I 'm excited about what AtoZgigs will have to offer for common service providers like Elia, who are just looking for more work.
AtoZgigs Launches in Phoenix
Today, we are thrilled to announce that AtoZ gigs is officially live in Phoenix! Phoenix is our first city to launch in, and we 're proud to launch in such a rapidly growing and thriving community, that we can call HQ. After some testing, we 've seen a lot of interest, excitement and energy from our fellow Phoenicians about what our platform will offer to its users.
We 're excited to help make life a little easier when anyone needs help getting various service jobs done. Whether it is house cleaning, painting, or even dog walking, people can now get gigs done more easily and affordably than ever. Also, if you are looking to use your skills to earn some extra money, you can do that too!
So, Phoenix: What kind of gigs will you add? Perhaps you have been putting off furniture assembly, that leaky faucet, or the much-needed maintenance on your lawn.
The app is free and available to download now, for both iOS and Google Play. Our web app will be up ASAP.
What are you waiting for Phoenix? Get going, with your gigs on your terms.
We Want You to Become a Gig Taker!
We 're seeing more and more gigs posted daily on our platform, by Gig Givers, so we 're looking Gig Takers. Anyone can become a Gig Taker. No screening, no license, and no application required. If you think you would be great at helping others, then you need to be part of the AtoZ gigs community.