Potluck dinners are one of the great inventions of humankind. So why not bring the potluck concept to more (or all) parts of life?
People want to connect with each other, and they do it best when they’re helping each other. We all have skills we can share with each other, and platforms like TaskRabbit have taken advantage of that opportunity to create marketplaces for skills. But all of us want to be contractors or task workers. We might just want to share our skills with friends and neighbors and family.
The problem is that we often don’t know how to help our friends and neighbors. Sometimes bringing a bottle of wine to a party is a nice gesture, but not that helpful (especially if everyone does it). Sometimes asking “how can I help?” is more of a hindrance than a help (especially when the event in question is a funeral).
The idea for “Potluck” is an idea for a standalone app or Facebook/Meetup.com events feature integration/add-on that allows people to set and assign tasks. It makes events group efforts, from casual parties to major life events like weddings or even births.
The Potluck feature/app will allow the host to enter a list of task/needs as part of an event listing. If hosts can’t think of anything, the app suggests tasks by category. When guests RSVP, they can select a task
(filling the propane tank) or a need (bringing a bag of ice) they can fulfill. Since they provide a general overview of their skills and resources in their Potluck profile, the app/feature can make more personalized suggestions to guests on how they can help the event host.
Everyone who RSVPS has some part to play in making the event happen (even if it’s just sharing the event), so everyone gets digital credit and a digital record of events they’ve helped to co-create. A good history of events just makes guests more attractive to hosts and more likely to get access to cooler, more exclusive events on the platform (which incidentally could become a major networking tool).
The net effect of this feature should be 1) more events and 2) higher-quality events, since I think group participation can make almost any activity better.