The Zimride Crew’s Favorite Advice from Mom

Here at Zimride, we’re all about sharing…whether we’re sharing the seats in our cars or sharing our lunches every day at the office. To celebrate Mother’s Day, we asked the Zimride Crew to share their favorite advice from Mom, the woman who first taught us how to share.

Erin, Communication Manager: “Different strokes for different folks.” It’s a funny phrase that means always keep an open mind when meeting new people, and appreciate their differences from you!

Adam, Director of Marketing: “Follow your heart and everything will turn out right.”

Paul, Account Manager: My mom once told me with a smile, “You get the kids you deserve.” She meant it proverbially, but also as a compliment. It also happens to be profound wisdom from a woman with five children.

Jay, Community Manager: My mom is an amazing cook and she always told me to live your life the way you cook. Always try new things, and most importantly, share it with the ones you love the most.

Femi, Software Engineer: One piece of advice my mom always gave was to pray about where we were going and not rush into things without finding peace first

Nasim, Executive Assistant: The best advice my mom gave me was to always believe in myself and stand up for my rights. Growing up in Iran as a teenager was tough. Women were viewed less than men, but because of the advice my mom gave me I never felt inferior, instead I felt even more powerful!

Thank you to all those amazing mothers out there!

Happy Mother’s Day,

The Zimride Crew

Zimride – April Fool’s Launch

Since founding Zimride in 2007 we have focused on improving transportation options by building a social rideshare community. We knew that eventually we’d have to expand our focus and move beyond cars. Around the same time that Zimride was born we also created another ridesharing platform, but since we were so focused on Zimride we decided to hold off on launching it. Due to changes in the economy and the general shift toward alternative forms of transportation we believe that now is the ideal time to launch our newest product: Zimbike.

You may have heard of bike sharing projects in Portland, D.C. and even Paris. Community bikesharing is a great way to get more people biking, but we believe that there is still substantial room for improvement. On an average ride, over 80% of the bike goes un-used by a solo biker and tandem bikes are too large for commuters in crowded cities. Today, we’re proud to introduce Zimbike—a revolutionary new way to save money, make friends, and share the ride.

Check out our launch video and help us spread the word.

Life is better when you share the ride.

– Logan & John

Collaborative Consumption Makes Life Better

Since the U.S. was founded, the ethos of the American Dream has motivated how we consume.  The dream was to own the biggest and best that you could buy. The more you owned, the better your quality of life.And even then, the grass was greener on the other side.

Today the economy is in the biggest recession since the Great Depression, resources are depleted, and more people are struggling to afford the amenities to make their lives better. For many, the original sentiment of the American Dream seems like a pipe dream. People are scaling back and ownership of luxury items like cars and houses has lost its luster.

Collaborative Consumption is a movement to disrupt the economic model of owning things for your own personal use. Instead of owning, now you can share, barter, rent, and borrow what you need thanks to a burgeoning marketplace of online networks that make it easy to exchange goods in real time.

Rachel Botsman, a Collaborative Consumption leader and founder of the Collaborative Fund, explains in a Ted Talk how globalization paired with socially enabled technology has “wired our world to share”:

We now live in a global village where we can mimic the ties that used to happen face to face. But on a scale and in ways that have never been possible before. So what’s actually happening is that social networks and real time technologies are taking us back where we’re bartering, trading, swapping, sharing, but they’re being reinvented into dynamic and appealing forms.

Sharing through online networks is not only becoming a ubiquitous way to consume, it is also the most sensible. Owners of resources can make passive income on assets, and people who don’t want the hassle and expense of owning resources can just pay for what they use. It saves everyone money and it removes the middle man to make transactions quick and convenient.

Collaborative consumption is also a win for the environment. The more we share the less we waste, and we really need to stop wasting. A recent climate change analysis reported by the New York Times exposes an undeniable and urgent need to reinvent the way we consume to stop destroying our planet. Redistributing resources instead of manufacturing new ones is an essential part of the solution. As Botsman cleverly states, it has become the fifth R: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Repair and Redistribute.

Sharing is also better for the greater good. It builds community, connects neighbors that may otherwise be strangers, and raises the standard of living for everyone. Collaboration with your peers in the age of social networks breeds trust, solidarity and even friendship, without sacrificing personal freedom and quality of life. As Botsman states, technology makes sharing frictionless and fun.

So why not share? Some might argue the risks are not worth the gains. No one can deny that there isn’t a degree of vulnerability you accept when connecting with people you don’t know. But actual statistics show that negative outcomes associated with sharing are pretty low: Yes, a renter though AirBnB trashed a woman’s house, but that was one bad occurrence out of millions of successful stays. Plus, if you’re conscientious about who you decide to collaborate with and network on sites that vet their users, you can minimize the risk even further.

Zimride mitigates risk by holding users accountable for their reputation through peer review, by requiring a Facebook login to ensure user identity, and by displaying the verified networks the user is a member of. This all results in a system that naturally rewards users who share more personal info and roots out users who aren’t trustworthy. You also have the option to communicate directly with users before booking a ride. As a Zimrider, you always have a choice of who you ride with.

It’s also your choice whether you jump on the sharing band wagon or not, but you should know that your neighbors are, and by the millions. Collaborative consumption has become such a huge trend because it reinvents an economic system that is in desperate need of improvement. Globalization and a shared economy are now facts of life, and people are starting to take advantage of this virtually small world by connecting with their community to make their lives better. Now the American Dream is not about what I can do for me, but what we can do for us. And together, we can all have greener grass.

Spend or Share: The Rise in Collaborative Consumption

After having read Rachel Botsmans book titled “What’s Mine Is Yours,” I started looking into the idea and philosophies behind collaborative consumption. Yes, I’m an avid couch surfer, I’m a Zipcar member, and I even occasionally use TaskRabbit but I still wasn’t seeing the bigger movement happening around me. It hit me shortly after when talking with my colleagues in the Zimride office that I was in the midst of a huge movement. A movement to share and collaborate instead of consuming and wasting. Maybe it’s the economy. Maybe it’s the climate change. Who knows… but I do know one thing. People’s mindsets are embracing the idea of collaborative consumption and change is coming. Fast.

Since the times of hyper-consumption, economics have changed and people’s mindset’s have progressed. What used to be regarded as an indication of higher social standing, now dimly sits behind the new trend of being wisely economical. Status and happiness no longer arise from owning an abundance of material goods. It now comes from connecting and collaborating with those around you to share common goals and common goods.

The value in sharing goods and services has become so important in boosting individual’s moods, creating support networks, and savings households big money that companies have begun to pop up to specifically accomodate these nationwide priorities. Investors are seeing, understanding and appreciating the value these companies offer which explains why many of these companies have also received big funding. Taskrabbit (hire someone to do tasks), Ubercab (immediate car service), Airbnb (rent personal home space), and Zipcar (carshare) are just a few of the highly succuessful companies whom have focused their niche around the idea of collaborative consumption. Why lose sleep and increase stress over completing low priority tasks when you can easily utilize other people’s down time and hire them to compelte the task for you? Why stay in a quiet and generic hotel room when you can utilize someone’s free space in their cozy home? Why drive independantly from others going the same direction when you could share the ride, share the costs, and share the conversations?  Better yet, why not share the car and the ride?

Gone are the days of hyper consumption where consumers purchased one new piece of clothing every 5.5 days, where we quickly succumbed to the over 3,000 advertising messages we see per day, and where we indirectly supported having more malls in America than schools. Consumers now days are savvy, economical and collaborative. Why? Because saving money, space, and time will never go out of style.

Rachel Botsman's Chart on Collaborative Consumption

Rachel Botsman's Chart on Collaborative Consumption