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Where Goeth the Future of Work

December 22, 1999
Related Topics: Future Workplace, Featured Article
It’s time to think about the approaching millennium and new ways of working. Here’s a checklist of what to watch for:

  • Reengineering: Companies are continually redesigning work systems to maximize flexibility, efficiency, and effectiveness.
  • Restructuring: Organization charts are being (or should be) dismantled because more and more of the real work is being done by ad hoc teams.
  • Technology: Advances in technology are dissolving most of the traditional boundaries (time and place) around work.
  • Knowledge-Work: There is less and less "low-skill" work for anyone to do in the new economy. More and more basic tasks and responsibilities require the leveraging of information, skill, and knowledge (and sometimes even wisdom).
  • Diversity: An increasing percentage of the workforce is made up of people all across the demographic map. The wide range of life experiences, perspectives, preferences, values and styles of this diverse workforce is radically rewriting the most basic tenets of doing business.
  • Globalization: Almost anyone today can buy from foreign suppliers, manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailers; sell to foreign companies and foreign consumers; tap into existing markets; open new markets; start foreign ventures; or take over and reinvigorate existing business entities. If you’re not thinking global, you might as well hide under your desk.
  • The Virtual Workplace: As long as they have a place to plug in, most people can work almost anywhere and anytime. People are more alone than ever at work, yet more connected than anyone could ever have imagined.

SOURCE: Bruce Tulgan,

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