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Uber and Taxis - Why Winning Matters
I’ve been taking as many taxis as I can when travelling to support the taxi industry. I didn’t feel it was right to not help them in their businesses when they paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to get their cab license, only to have it rendered useless by Uber. Cities and local businesses profited from the taxi industry and highly regulated the industry, which drove up the price of the cab license. Now Uber is changing the way we look at rented transportation. I was resisting until now.
This past weekend I was in Toronto at a wedding, and we took a cab from the train station to our destination. After being spun around the city, the bill came to $60, which included the tip. The cab driver made excuses, pretended to act as a tour guide (which wasn’t asked for) drove a dirty cab and really didn’t have a clue.
Later that evening, we were treated with an Uber ride to our restaurant. The driver invited us in, indicated we had a bottle of water by our seats and was pleasantly silent. His car was very clean and the ride cost a total of $7, which included tip.
Later, we calculated that the earlier ride from the train station would cost about $24 with Uber as opposed to the $60 with the cab that we paid.
I downloaded the Uber App, and now it’s no contest. Uber won. It crushed the cab experience. I’d like to send them a symbolic trophy.
In my book “Don’t be a Wimp Raise a Strong Leader,” I talk about how teaching your child to win is very important. Working hard to innovate and be the best is what matters when they leave the bubble of Wimp Parenting or an environment where everyone gets a trophy. Teach your child early that in many situations being the best and winning is the only thing that matters. Cab drivers, the cab industry and the municipalities passing laws restricting Uber want everyone to get a trophy. It will only delay innovation not rescue the taxi industry.
Our cab driver from the train station lamented how the value of his cab license has plummeted to from $350,000 to less than $100,000 because of the innovation of Uber. My solution to this is simple. Municipalities need to set a fee to pay out the cab license holders and let Uber continue to win. If a better service comes along and takes out Uber, more power to them. Let the free market prevail.
Make sure you expose your child to winning and losing life experiences and stop parenting as a Wimp. If you disagree, that is fine, just purchase one of those cab licenses and hope for government rescue. We all know how that is going to end. Winning does matter, and your child will experience that as soon as they step outside of your front door. Are they ready? As always, your comments are appreciated directly to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.