Here at ReadyTalk, we’re big fans of Jacob Morgan and his book (and philosophy) The Future of Work. Jacob identifies the changes we’re seeing unfold in the modern workplace, specifically related to how to get the most out of your employees by giving them the environment and tools with which they can best thrive.
So what are these future of work principles?
- Has a flexible work environment
- Can customize own work
- Shares information
- Uses new ways to communicate and collaborate
- Can become a leader
- Shifts from knowledge worker to learning worker
- Learns and teaches at will
Change and unified communication isn’t so scary; it’s happening now
Any change can be scary, but some of the trends are especially concerning for management and information technology (IT) professionals. These trends shift control to the employees, which can be a nightmare to manage. Until recently, we had our own little break in internal communication, where certain teams were using one messaging platform, and others were using something completely different. So before you could connect with someone, you had to stop to think about how you could reach them. Talk about technology getting in the way of communication!
There has to be a balance of personal preference and organizational efficiency. But I’m probably preaching to the choir, here.
Unified communications attempts to offset some of challenges of connecting and collaborating with your co-workers. When I want to call Dwight, I don’t have to worry about whether he’s in San Diego or Denver this week. I can just call his extension, and he can answer regardless of where he is.
Wait, a phone extension? This is the future of work? Yes, it is. See, the future isn’t so scary 🙂
Letting employees be accessible using a standard business phone number is a step in the right direction. I can get my calls (or my voicemails) without being in the physical office. Heck, some of my coworkers don’t even have a desk phone; their number rings on the softphone on their computers, and their mobile device.
Yes, mobile phones are a huge part of the future of work, too. Right now, people are using their personal mobile devices to get information about work anyway to be more productive and to have that flexibility. I can be at the doctor’s office waiting to be seen and still provide needed information. I don’t need to be tied to my office phone or computer. This has been huge for our team in terms of getting work done effectively and quickly. Some companies bring in meals so they can ensure their employees don’t wander off to eat at all hours of the day. Ah, the horror!
At ReadyTalk, go ahead and leave the office. And if a coworker needs your thoughts on something, he can just shoot you a quick IM or fire up a video call. Just because you’re not physically in the same spot doesn’t mean communication can’t take place.
Workers are more productive when they leave the office
A 2016 study by TINYPulse found that remote workers are not only happier, they also feel they’re significantly more productive than when they’re in the office. Imagine that: the important communication can still happen, but the distracting noise is cut out?
So here’s the not-so secret truth: the Future of Work is already here. That’s especially true at ReadyTalk. Both in how we get things done, and in the tools we’re creating to help you work better, anywhere you wish.