First there’s disruption.
Then the trend becomes clear.
Then there’s evolution.
Finally, corporations come in to clean it up.
Ford is now going deep into the Sharing Economy as it concerns cars, creating a separate tech company called Ford Smart Mobility LLC. It’ll be based partly in Detroit, but also partly in Palo Alto, Calif. With this tech company Ford will invest in new mobility products and options, such as a ride-hailing service like Uber or Lyft.
This is how it’s done. An idea booms. Startups begin saturating. Then evolution comes out from under to show the truth that underlies the boom. What do I mean? I mean Millennials, while responsible for the ride-hailing economy that has come out of the Sharing Economy, are still people who will have families and homes in suburbs. They’ll need cars. They’ll need Ford.
Evolution says no matter how different or radical Millennials may seem, they’ll still do many of the things also done by previous generations, just with updates or slight alterations.
Ford, while maybe slightly worried about earlier (and let’s face it, misguided) reports that Millennials will shun cars forever, was happy to see that the kids were buying cars at a growing rate in 2015. That means the automaker can go deep and clean up its end of the Sharing Economy.
Chances are that in five years, plenty of Millennials are driving Ford and using its ride-hailing service, which is competing heavily with Uber at the top of the market. Ford has the money, the resources and the devoted customer base necessary to do this, and quickly.
Yes, Millennials don’t like corporations like previous generations. But evolution says Millennials will need things to raise families in a world still making it impossible for complete disruption. When a Millennial parent needs diapers, it may turn online, but it may also need to visit Walmart in a pinch. When a Millennial mother is looking at taking a child to school every day, running regular errands and needing a little breather from the city, she’s probably going to the suburbs and buying a new car. And maybe that new car – because she needs to carry all the stuff her kid is doing – is larger, because it’s what Ford is telling her to buy.
The world has been constructed a certain way. We’re not equipped to simply change it all in a day. Or even in a generation. We can disrupt until we show gradual and real change (and positive change, especially), but evolution will always remain.
Ford will probably have success with a new tech business. It’s just how things are.