The point everybody is missing about the backtrack on remote working by IBM

The point everybody is missing about the backtrack on remote working by IBM

IBM recently announced that it was going to consolidate its 2,600 marketing department in six locations around the US. Nothing wrong with that you may say, but as part of the consolidation it has to told people to relocate so they can attend the office every day and workers that had been part of IBM’s […]

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A Turing Test for the workplace professions

A Turing Test for the workplace professions

One of the ideas we’re going to hear about a lot over the next few years is the Turing Test. It describes the point at which a machine’s behaviour becomes indistinguishable from a human’s, so that a typical person is unable to work out if he or she is interacting with a machine or an […]

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Social technology has the power to make the workplace more humane

Social technology has the power to make the workplace more humane

Social technology can, and should, make the workplace more humane. That’s because it has the potential and ability to shift the power dynamic from the few to the many. It gives more people a voice: one that they’re not afraid to use. You’ve only got to look at the uprisings, and the overthrowing of governments, in Egypt […]

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Heisenberg, Jabberwocky and the medicalisation of dissatisfaction

Heisenberg, Jabberwocky and the medicalisation of dissatisfaction

A survey was published a couple of years ago to coincide with ‘National Stress Awareness Day’. Conducted by Robertson Cooper, the consultancy co-founded by media friendly academic Cary Cooper, the report made some fairly modest and believable claims about the impacts of stress. Especially if you compare them to the more startling findings of other […]

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The difference between office design and facilities management is like the difference between sex and parenthood

The difference between office design and facilities management is like the difference between sex and parenthood

There is an ongoing feeling within the facilities management discipline that when it comes to office design, facilities managers are not consulted early enough or well enough or consistently enough to ensure that the end result is a workplace that is as functional and as effective as it could be. The reason this feeling persists […]

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Workplace design alone cannot motivate us or make us happy at work

Workplace design alone cannot motivate us or make us happy at work

There’s a good reason why we find it hard to establish the causal links between our working lives and our personal happiness. It’s because it’s all very complicated. So complicated in fact that you can sidetrack any discussion on the subject by asking elementary questions such as: ‘what do you mean by happy?’ or ‘should it be […]

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Mobile and internet connectivity should be a priority for commerical real estate

Mobile and internet connectivity should be a priority for commerical real estate

Cluttons has proposed that a mobile coverage rating should be added to lettable workspace criteria, because despite mobile and internet connections being the fifth essential utility for the modern environment they are often overlooked when leasing space. With the rise of dependence on SIM-based equipment, the property firm argues that workplaces should be let with […]

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How workplace art can draw the distinction between branding and corporate identity

How workplace art can draw the distinction between branding and corporate identity

One of the many traps that lies in wait for unwary organisations is to confuse corporate identity with their brand. The visual aspects of an identity may reflect the firm’s personality and values, and a change may go in hand in hand with the development of a new strategic direction or culture, but a mismatch […]

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In a crowd of truths, we can discern and reclaim what it means to be human

In a crowd of truths, we can discern and reclaim what it means to be human

This is the second of two responses to an excellent article by Antony Slumbers, the first being this perspective from my mirrored room, in this instance offering that his views offer a far too presumptive picture of how technology will shape our work future. The paragraph headlines are from Antony’s original article. One person’s optimism is another’s pessimism. […]

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What Richard Dawkins can teach us about ergonomics and the value of pain

What Richard Dawkins can teach us about ergonomics and the value of pain

In his book The Greatest Show on Earth, the evolutionary biologist Professor Richard Dawkins devotes a section to the biological rationale for pain. Although this is an ethical issue as far as humans are concerned, and most of us might think it’s one thing we could easily do without thank you very much, Nature is […]

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Is work important to us because we need it to be important?

Is work important to us because we need it to be important?

The ethical, practical and philosophical implications of how we live alongside robots is something we will have to address very soon. It is a point well made in this conversation between Kate Darling of MIT and the neuroscientist Sam Harris. But we’ve had parts of this conversation before. For example, while most people will not […]

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A report into facilities management that is hard to swallow

A report into facilities management that is hard to swallow

I’ve wanted to write this piece for a while. I suspect it’ll piss a few people off. But I need to get it off my chest. I’ve held off writing it because I have been worried that it will be seen as disrespectful to the memory of a well-liked and respected member of the facilities […]

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