In San Francisco, the jobs of the future are already beginning to appear. A new company called cater2.me has gone into business providing a variety of catered lunches to businesses too small to afford a chef of their own. The New York Times reports:
It’s true that these companies, which are paying engineers $100,000 or $150,000 a year, have every incentive to keep their employees at their desks working, [the company co-founder] said in an e-mail. Paying for a meal gets a firm another $50 to $70 of work from an office-bound worker during the lunch hour…Mr. Yungst visited many offices in San Francisco, and strolled past food trucks on the city streets selling porchetta sandwiches, curries, barbecue and just about anything you can think of stuffed in a taco. This gave him an idea: if people can’t get out to the food, Mr. Yungst would bring the food to them. Mr. Lorton, who had met Mr. Yungst when they were both freshmen at the University of Pennsylvania, liked the idea and joined him.They talked to chefs who were just starting out, many of them hoping to break into the catering business while working in communal kitchens and running pop-up restaurants, farmers’ market food stands or food trucks. The chefs lacked the time and the connections to get inside offices to sell their food.The two partners found Feldo Nartapura outside a Mission district art gallery grilling skewers of Indonesian sate on a portable grill. Entree to the office-worker market has given him more business and spread his weekend-concentrated business over seven days.“I have consistent work,” he said. “Before I’d only look forward to the weekend.”
In my initial post on the jobs of the future, I noted that for all the businesses the internet has rendered obsolete, it has opened up countless new opportunities for those enterprising enough to take advantage of them. It is particularly advantageous for businesses looking to serve small companies or individuals who may not have the time or resources to navigate complicated systems on their own.Creative use of the internet has allowed a small business to connect willing buyers with willing sellers, launching a new micro-industry in the process. America is re-inventing itself one job, one company at a time, and a million stories like this one will shape the twenty first century.