Does what other people think still matter? Get ready for an intriguing episode as Mike explores how our Uber ratings can reveal more about us than we might think. Hear the story of an Uber ride in Nashville that led to the revelation that a 4.3 rating might not be as impressive as it sounds. Mike talks about why, even when we say we don’t care about others’ opinions, we may actually care more than we realize. Listen in as he explores the implications of this rating system, not just for our rides, but also for our understanding of how we interact with others.
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Episode transcript below:
0:00:00 – Mike Malatesta
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Hey everybody, welcome back to this free Thinking Friday episode of the how to Happen podcast, the solo episode that I’m doing today. I was inspired to do this when we were on our pontoon boat to have my family out. On the pontoon boat we were cruising around the lake and we were just talking about things and this particular thing happened to come up and it made me think, oh, I never would have thought of that and I’m calling it what other people think still matters. So what other people think still matters. So on August 30th this may have come out by the time you’re listening to this, but I recorded a podcast episode with a fellow named Brian Clayton, and Brian is the CEO and co-founder of a company called GreenPow. Greenpow is a nationwide lawn care platform. You can become a member, join onto their program and they will basically manage the cutting and care of your lawn. And I remember that one of the magazines I think it was the entrepreneur magazine referred to his company as the Uber of lawn care.
And just an aside, people you see a lot of software companies. Maybe in other companies they’re dying to be compared to Uber. They want to be the Uber of whatever it is that they do in Brian’s case, lawn care and that wasn’t something he was looking for, but that was applied to him. But other people are looking to it. They’ll do a pitch deck or an investor presentation and they’ll actually describe their company as being the Uber of something. It’s supposed to make you think that it’s going to be this amazing, growing, profitable company. But it’s always kind of interesting to me because Uber has definitely grown a lot. I mean, they’re everywhere and they’re into a bunch of different things, but they haven’t made money yet, and so it makes me wonder if they ever will. And then if I want to ever be the Uber of anything, because, like in Brian Clayton’s case, for example, his company, greenpow, actually does make money and has always made money from the beginning, which kind of is the purpose of the business. But anyway, that’s an aside.
The reason that I’m talking to you about what other people think still matters is because my niece she’s 32, and she was telling us this story on the boat about getting on her Uber app and ordering a car to take her somewhere in I think it was Nashville, tennessee and so the driver came and picked her up. There’s a female driver picked her up and the first question the woman asked my niece was do you live in the Northeast? And my niece Christina thought well, that’s a, that’s a weird question to ask. And she says well, I live in the Washington DC area. And the woman says something like I figured, because your Uber rating sucks, no-transcript. And she’s like what are you talking about? She’s like, well, when I see Uber ratings this low, I often think that it’s because you know the person lives up in the Northeast and the Uber drivers there aren’t as kind with their ratings as we might be here in Nashville. So that started a discussion about what is your Uber rating?
So we had I don’t know eight people on the boat and I never looked at my Uber rating and I don’t know that anyone ever looked at their Uber rating, and I didn’t even know how to look at my Uber rating. So we started talking about how to find your Uber rating and what everyone’s was. And, by the way, you click on your picture, your profile picture, and then it goes down and it tells you what your rating is. So the youngest person on the boat was 26 and the oldest was 59. And it was amazing how much, how quickly, you could get someone interested in and caring about an Uber rating that is the byproduct of a bunch of really anonymous people’s opinions about your trip with them. You don’t know which driver gave you what rating and you also don’t know you don’t know what they said. So you and you have no that I’m aware of. You don’t have any mechanism for challenging it or asking for the reason or asking to get it changed if, for example, you’re rating as well.
But here’s the thing. Here’s the thing that was really so. The Uber rating, I think, is a zero to five scale and I believe Christina’s rating was like a 4.3, which that sounds pretty good to me, but this, as this Uber driver in Tennessee explained to her, 4.3 is really low. There’s a lot of drivers that will not pick up a 4.3. Imagine that. So 4.3 out of five and there’s a lot of drivers not willing to pick you up.
The whole discussion made me think that you know people who say well, I don’t care what other people think about me, I’m just my own. They may not be telling the truth, because everyone that got people’s attention and everyone on the boat cared at least a little bit, or a little bit more than they had before, about what our score was on this Uber thing. And I got lucky because my score was, I think was just slightly the highest out of everybody’s at 4.95, which and I don’t even take that many Ubers and I don’t know what I did to get a 4.95. Maybe it was just I wasn’t in the Northeast when I took the Uber, so I’m not sure, but yeah, it got me thinking like, when it comes to down to things, that we care about how people perceive us and how it really matters and it matters even if it’s an anonymous person who takes us on a 15 minute ride somewhere we wanna be highly ranked. It’s like we want that meritocracy in our lives, like if the ratings are gonna be there. We wanna be rated highly, even if we have no idea why. Because it says something to us, about us. We don’t get to participate in it at all, but we want that rating to say something about us and will always be important to us. What other people think about us, how other people perceive us.
I did an episode a couple of free thinking Fridays ago about integrity and there was a similar message in there. What people think about our integrity matters a lot, because their perception is the perception really that matters. We’re not trying to convince ourselves we got great integrity. We’re trying to convince the world, the people who know us, that we do have great integrity. And I think the same thing comes down with this Uber thing.
We care about what people say and we are willing to adjust our behavior in order to improve our score, in this case, our Uber rating, and I think in some cases I think that’s the way it should be. That’s right. I mean. I don’t think it’s right to obsess about it and give the power of how you think about yourself over to the Uber drivers who take you from place to place. But how you treat people matters all the time, and these Uber ratings and how they reflect who you are onto another anonymous Uber driver opening the app when you request a ride well, it matters. So, I don’t know, check out what your Uber rating is, see if it’s where you think it should be or where it’s not where you should be. But if you’re like me, it’ll be the first time you ever checked it and maybe there’s something that’s gonna make your day or gonna surprise you there. But my point in doing this is to simply say I was a great conversation and that what other people think, how other people perceive you, does, in fact, matter. So do me a favor please maximize the greatness that’s inside of you today.
Thank you so much for listening to the show. I hope you did get some value out of it and, if you did, please follow or subscribe to the show, share it, talk to somebody about it, talk to me about it, send me an email, do something with it. And I also want you to do something with your future. You know what I want you to do with your future. I want you to make it yours. I want you to make it your property, something that you actually own, that you pay for, own and covet, and that you are exceptionally proud to own too. So make your future your property. Until next time. Bye, hey everybody.
Thanks for listening to this show and before you go, I just have three requests for you. One if you like what I’m doing, please consider subscribing or following the podcast on whatever podcast platform you prefer. If you’re really into it, leave me a review, write something nice about me, give me five stars or whatever you feel is most appropriate. Number two I’ve got a book. It’s called Owner Shift how Getting Selfish Got Me Unstuck. It’s an Amazon bestseller and I’d love for you to read it or listen to it on Audible or wherever else Barnes, noble, amazon you can get it everywhere If you’re looking for inspiration that will help you unlock your greatness and potential. Order or download it today so that you can have your very own copy, and if you get it, please let me know what you think.
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