The changing face of the workplace

“My father had one job in his life, I’ve had six in mine, and my kids will have six jobs at the same time.”

I heard this quote at a conference recently and it struck me as being a pretty accurate description – although my kids working six jobs is a little hard to believe when some days tying their shoe laces still poses a serious problem.

Nevertheless, it is true, the 2017 workplace, and how we work, is undergoing a major transformation.

Today, work is what you do, it is no longer a rigid place you go to.  As you know, Calculated Matters has had our own workplace transformation with the recent shift to a virtual office.

While virtual offices are also a relatively new concept in the business world, here are five reasons it’s been a great move for us:

  • Flexibility means happier employees, which also means increased productivity and less turnover;
  • We have access to an unlimited pool of global talent anywhere in the world;
  • Remote workers who telecommute means savings on office leasing costs;
  • The elimination of a conventional office means less energy consumption and a cleaner environment.

Virtual offices are not just for small firms anymore. It’s a shift that I think we will see increasingly, over the next few years.  Call me anytime if you’d like some advice on how your business could move to the virtual model.

So, what other changes are going on out there? 

Naomi Simson (Founder, Red Balloon and ‘Shark Tank’ investor) wrote a very interesting article “The Five New Rules of Work” with her personal insights on how the workplace is dramatically changing.

Whether we like it or not, she says some old rules are becoming obsolete — and new ones are coming into play, driven by both technology and the demands of workers.  Here are a few of Naomi’s ideas on the changing nature of work.

Old rule: You commute into an office every day.
New rule: Work can happen wherever you are, anywhere in the world.

No longer is it common to know your colleagues by face and name — you might only know them by their email address or time zone. You might engage someone with a fabulous array of business skills but who you never meet face to face, because he/she lives in another country a few time zones away.  You might never meet your boss face-to-face for the same reason.

Old rule: Work is 9-to-5.
New rule: You’re available 24-7 (when you want to work).

Of course, this depends on the urgency of the industry you work in, but with the nature of our forever growing online presence, this could be as simple as checking emails in bed; working on documents on the bus; or reviewing presentations with your late-night cup of tea.  It has become second nature to us to work wherever we are, whenever possible.

Old rule: Work-life balance is about two distinct, separate spheres.
New rule:For better or worse, the line between life and work is slowly disappearing.

Naomi says that when you are valued, connected, and feel proud of your contribution, then your work-life is just as important as home — and there is a complete melding between work and life.

Old rule: You have a full-time job with benefits.
New rule:You go from gig to gig, project to project (several employers at a time.)

Gig to gig – new rule??  This sums up the life of most of our wonderful and talented musician clients who have already been living this ‘new rule’ for years. I guess now its time for the rest of the country to catch up.

Old rule: You work for money, to support yourself and your family.
New rule:  You work because you’re “passionate” about a “movement” or a “cause”—you must “love what you do.”

This is definitely one that already resonates within the creative industry. Passion often drives our clients.  Money is often secondary – although we still need to eat and have a roof over our heads.

Naomi believes there comes a time in everyone’s life where they need to stop, assess and figure out for themselves why it is they get out of bed each morning.   “Going” to work may mean various things to people, but what she believes should be integral is a mutual feeling of recognition for doing good work – wherever that “work” might be.

There is no doubt we live in a fast moving world!  I’d be interested in your thoughts about these ‘new’ workplace rules.  Send me a message.  I’d love to hear from you.



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Sydney, Australia
PO Box 425, Marrickville
NSW 1475 Australia

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