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

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  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 […]

Are you working or shirking from home?

Are you working or shirking from home?

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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 […]

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

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

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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 […]

Tips for small businesses on their first office search

Tips for small businesses on their first office search

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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 […]

What gets measured in the workplace, gets managed

What gets measured in the workplace, gets managed

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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 […]

Tipping point reached in battle between tablets and PCs

Tipping point reached in battle between tablets and PCs

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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 […]

Whatever the office of the future is, it should be there to serve people

Whatever the office of the future is, it should be there to serve people

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Futurology is notoriously a mug’s game. Especially when it comes to making predictions about technology. Just ask Ken Olson, the founder of DEC who in 1977 pronounced that ‘there is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home’. Or Bill Gates himself who once claimed that Microsoft ‘will never make a 32 bit […]

Video: The 21st Century Office – how the BBC got it all wrong in 1969

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  Two days ago we published a strikingly prescient report from Walter Cronkite dating from 1967 about how the world of work would look in the 21st century. Two years later the BBC was to get things hopelessly wrong, not only with its tired and misguided wannabe existentialism, but also with its vision of a […]

Plenty of innovation in Stockholm. Just ignore the price of beer.

Plenty of innovation in Stockholm. Just ignore the price of beer.

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They say first impressions count so after landing in Stockholm it was a shame that mine veered towards a personal negative rather than a positive when I discovered that my hotel room interior was purer in design than a polar bear’s coat. To a problem solving mind like mine, this didn’t add up. Surely the […]

Video: Why designers need to design for our ears too

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    A subject too often ignored but about which we now have a great deal of research is that of acoustic comfort. Insight has covered the subject before, but the fact remains that too often we design for our eyes far more than our ears. What we also know to be true is that […]

What Ronald McDonald can teach us about office design

What Ronald McDonald can teach us about office design

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As the UK continues to agonise over the potentially equine provenance of many of its beef products, one firm that has managed to stay above it all is McDonald’s. While rivals Burger King quickly became embroiled in the scandal after traces of horsemeat were found in its Burgers, McDonalds ramped up its claims in the […]

Video: A new kind of job market, or the commoditisation of work?

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    At a TED talk delivered in London at the end of 2012, Wingham Rowan, project director of Slivers-of-Time, a ‘work marketplace’, says that websites such as his are thriving by bringing together what he terms ultra-flexible workers with employers to deliver short periods of work on specific tasks. The question is: whether this is […]

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