Charles Handy was a true visionary about the modern workplace

Charles Handy was a true visionary about the modern workplace

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It’s incredibly hard not to be impressed by Charles Handy and even harder not to find him likeable. The scope of his intellect and humanity is evident on the page, in his interviews and in his broadcasts. He reeks of credibility and warmth. Do a Google image search of him and the pictures you find epitomise English middle-class academic decency (despite the fact that he’s Irish); jumpers, churchyards, armchairs and a benign smile. More →

Workplace technology enters new `golden age`

Workplace technology enters new `golden age`

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A ‘golden age’ of workplace technology could be coming, in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic according to a new report, co-authored by Professor Michael Dickmann from Cranfield University which investigated the Global Mobility response to COVID-19. The report claims that some multinational companies were completely lacking crisis response plans when the pandemic hit, and many are now adjusting their goals because of movement restrictions and employee wellbeing. More →

Childhood’s end for work and the need for a grown-up conversation about it

Childhood’s end for work and the need for a grown-up conversation about it

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In my opinion Arthur C Clarke’s finest novel Childhood’s End is the story of an Earth that is invaded by a force of alien Overlords. This is not a destructive colonial invasion, which is why there’s no Hollywood blockbuster in the tale, but a seemingly benevolent intervention which ushers in a golden age for humanity. Although humankind initially does not get to meet the Overlords in person (for reasons I won’t give away here), the aliens unite the world’s governments, eradicate crime, conflict and the nation state and do away with the need for creativity and hard work. It is the literal end of history.

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Right, said Fred. Here I am again

Right, said Fred. Here I am again

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If there has been an underlying driver of workplace thinking over the past several decades, it has been a rejection of the principles of scientific management. These begat the idea of the office as a factory, subject to the same rigid times and places of work and the same culture of process, efficiency and productivity. This made a pantomime villain of its key figure Frederick Taylor. The worst adjective you could use to describe a working culture was Taylorist. More →

The second wave of digital transformation after lockdown

The second wave of digital transformation after lockdown

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The reimagining of business in the digital age to create new — or modify existing — business processes, culture, and customer experiences to meet changing business and market requirements has been happening at varying speed for decades. The coronavirus pandemic is impacting digital transformation in a range of ways. More →

Zoom fatigue and the new era of online meetings

Zoom fatigue and the new era of online meetings

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When it comes to that annual announcement the publishers of dictionaries like to make about their Word of the Year, 2020 will have only one candidate. But if there were a shortlist, you can bet that Zoom would be on it. The uptake of Zoom and other apps to help people connect during the lockdown has been remarkable. Numbers emerge each week of the scale of growth, but they’re instantly out of date and probably meaningless anyway. We could make up something like there having been a 2,300% increase since March 23rd, and it might as well be true. More →

Working from home opens up new data security threat

Working from home opens up new data security threat

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working from home securityA new report from Tessian claims that nearly half of employees (48 percent) are less likely to follow safe data practices when working from home. The State of Data Loss Prevention 2020 report suggests that the global shift to remote working poses new security challenges for businesses and why traditional security solutions are failing to curb the problem of the insider threat and accidental data loss. More →

Firms need to embed lessons from pandemic in a new work culture

Firms need to embed lessons from pandemic in a new work culture

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work cultureOrganisations should build on the lessons they have learned about themselves and their employees during the pandemic and embed them into their work culture. That is the main claim of the tenth annual Global Human Capital Trends report from Deloitte. More →

Organisational change is best achieved by `kinetic’ leaders, claims report

Organisational change is best achieved by `kinetic’ leaders, claims report

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organisational changeDeloitte has published its 2020 Global Technology Leadership survey, “The Kinetic Leader: Boldly Reinventing the Enterprise,” which sets out to examine the broader scope and evolution of tech leadership roles. The findings claim to reveal the increased need for agile and kinetic leaders — change instigators adept at driving tech-enabled transformation and organisational change. More →

Getting beyond the hype of technological innovation and productivity

Getting beyond the hype of technological innovation and productivity

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Not long ago, innovation was a largely internal affair. The journey from the laboratory to the marketplace took place largely within the four walls of the firm. Think of Bell Labs, IBM Research, or Xerox PARC. Each of them created important technological breakthroughs. And each breakthrough was commercialized through the company’s own businesses.    More →

Majority of UK businesses now automating key processes

Majority of UK businesses now automating key processes

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The UK is making great strides in adopting process automation technologies like robotic process automation (RPA) and process mining, according to new research from digital intelligence company ABBYY. The research report, The State of Process Mining and RPA (registration), claims that 64 percent of UK businesses are already using process mining technologies, with almost 3 in 10 (28 percent) currently using RPA and a further 34 percent intending to start in the next year. This comes as no surprise, since a vast majority believe that process mining (91 percent) and RPA (87 percent) are, or would be, useful to their business. More →

What the humble avocado can teach us about why we will always work in offices

What the humble avocado can teach us about why we will always work in offices

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From the archive. Originally published in 2013. People have been talking about the death of the office for at least a quarter of a century. Leaving aside the often misleading conflation of flexible working with homeworking that is often involved, the underlying premise of such talk has been the same for all of that time. The main argument is, and always was, that there is an alternative to the tedium, aggravation and expense of travelling to an office solely to work inside its hermetically sealed and fluorescent-lit, blue-carpeted interior alongside people who can drive you spare, before you schlep home again. More →

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