Google and Yahoo office strategies teach us the value of the velvet glove

Google and Yahoo office strategies teach us the value of the velvet glove

It’s a week now since the whole Yahoo-ha kicked off and since that time everybody has had their say on the matter including – refreshingly – those in the mainstream media. The story has followed its own narrative arc, from the initial gasps of horror at Yahoo’s audacious challenge to a cherished piece of contemporary […]

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Working ‘proper hours’ may no longer be possible

Working ‘proper hours’ may no longer be possible

Today is the Trades Union Congress’s self-styled ‘Work Your Proper Hours Day’. Last week the TUC announced that it had used Government statistics to calculate that more than 5 million UK employees put in an average of over 7 hours of unpaid overtime a week, adding around £28 billion a year to the economy. Like […]

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Yahoo case doesn’t tell the whole story of teleworking

Yahoo case doesn’t tell the whole story of teleworking

Yahoo! made headlines across the US and the rest of the world this week by announcing they are terminating the company’s telework program.  Does this signal, broadly, the pending demise of telework?  Here’s my take: this story is actually deeper than just about telework. Yahoo! has been wandering around aimlessly for a number of years, and […]

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Workplace Anachronisms: No. 1 – the BCO Specification Guide

Workplace Anachronisms: No. 1 – the BCO Specification Guide

The British Council for Offices claims that it is ‘Britain’s leading forum for the discussion and debate of issues affecting the office sector. Its members are organisations involved in creating, acquiring or occupying office space, whether architects, lawyers, surveyors, financial institutions or public agencies.’ If true, this makes its Specification Guide all the more remarkable […]

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Building designers should pay more heed to what users need

Building designers should pay more heed to what users need

These past two weeks have seen me playing and working in what I believe is fondly referred to as “That London” by those who live and work in the rest of the United Kingdom. Whilst resisting the temptations of the capital’s fleshpots, I’ve had the time to reflect on the design of public spaces and […]

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Video: ‘We are not as endlessly predictable as you would think’

  An old one, but still my favourite from the RSA Animate series. It’s always worth reminding ourselves that the issue of motivation is very complex. People are not machines and function within the context of a whirl of emotions, relationships, influences, events, crises, stimuli, personal characteristics and thoughts.  That is why many of our […]

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Are you working or shirking from home?

Are you working or shirking from home?

During recent weather-related travel disruption, I was inundated with various pieces of information on software that spies on home based employees to check that they really are working, not shirking from home. As Acas opens a consultation on a draft Code of Practice regarding the extended right to request flexible working; and figures from the […]

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Yahoo is not the only firm that doesn’t like flexible working

Yahoo is not the only firm that doesn’t like flexible working

As news emerged over the weekend from Silicon Valley that Yahoo had introduced a new policy that insisted employees work from the company’s HQ, a survey from O2 in the UK highlighted just how many firms are not as keen on the practice of flexible working as they might claim in theory. The question we […]

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Tips for small businesses on their first office search

Tips for small businesses on their first office search

Finding a great office can be a hugely important step on the road to success for a small business. Business can not only outgrow their existing space, but even for those who want to remain small, escaping the distractions of a home-working environment by moving into a space specifically designed for working can give a […]

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What gets measured in the workplace, gets managed

What gets measured in the workplace, gets managed

Are we finally seeing the first signs of the end of the downturn?  Earlier this week the Government announced that UK unemployment had fallen. While I know there have been quibbles about what this all meant, other data from specific market sectors backs up the idea that we may be seeing some tentative causes for […]

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Video: Arthur C Clarke predicts remote and flexible working in 1964

  Some people foresaw the virtualisation of work, flexible working and the erosion of the workplace over 50 years ago. Scientist and author Arthur C Clarke appeared on the BBC’s Horizon programme in 1964 to apply his foresight and clipped vowels to the question of what future technological advances would mean for the way we […]

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Tipping point reached in battle between tablets and PCs

Tipping point reached in battle between tablets and PCs

The signs of the final showdown between the personal computer and the tablet are now all around us. It is evident in the launch of new products such as Microsoft’s Surface and the new generation of more powerful iPads which can (nearly) match the performance of Apple’s own laptops. It is also evident in the […]

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