On the Evolution of Work Systems in the Digital Economy
Category Archives: Results-Only Work Environment (ROWE)
Now here’s an interesting article about transforming your office into a home office. Ben Lempert’s article, Why Every Office Should be a Home Office, provides various suggestions for making your office more comfortable, healthy, and conducive to focused work along with advocating for a results-oriented work environment. Take a look at this list and let me know what works for you!
Who doesn’t love a home office? You can show up to work in sweatpants, you can get your laundry done, and you can eat when and what you want. Honestly, it’s awesome.
There are plenty of articles out there telling you how to set up a home office to avoid distractions. But what happens when you have to work in — gulp — an actual office? You know, not at home?
My proposal: start thinking of every office as a “home office.” This means: make every office a place where you can be relaxed and productive, comfortable and focused.
How to do that? Here are some suggestions.
Read more at Why Every Office Should be a Home Office
Flipside Workspace versus Videoconferencing: Comparing User Experience of Collaborative Online Platforms [Report]
As promised in my previous post, the Flipside Workspace versus videoconferencing user experience pilot study results are now available. Click here to obtain a copy of the report. As a brief introduction, you will find out how Flipside Workspace measured up against videoconferencing on the following psychological dimensions (Note: #4, identity exploration, only applies to Flipside Workspace): Read more of this post
It’s been awhile since I’ve posted, so I’ll first address the slowdown on my blog. Thankfully, this isn’t about running out of steam but, rather, preoccupation with projects – including the Flipside Workspace user experience study which I mentioned in January 2015. As it is wrapping up, this is a good time to revisit it and provide detailed information. What I left unmentioned previously is that this study contrasts users’ experience meeting in Flipside Workspace with videoconferencing across various psychological dimensions.
For those who’re new to Flipside Workspace, this is an avatar-based, 3-dimensional digital workspace. It’s best described at Flipside Workspace’s site as, “an immersive online business district that takes those perks of real-life office dynamics and brings them into a virtual environment.” To see how elaborately crafted the environment is, watch this video. Read more of this post
A look at the history of the office reveals that office space configurations have changed considerably over time. Naturally, different space configurations impact workers differently (and of course, at the individual level, the manner in which physical space impacts people depends on the individual’s personality, job, and tasks the individual performs). More specifically, environmental space can positively or negatively impact attention spans, productivity, creativity, job satisfaction, and stress level.
University of Southern California, Dornsife, designed an infographic that expands upon this subject. Personally, I find myself agreeing with this assessment of the complete open office plan. However, I doubt that this phenomena, along with cubicles and private offices, will become extinct. A reduction? Yes. However, the complete absence of such configurations? No.
Not only do companies and work cultures vary, but there’s also great heterogeneity when it comes to people, the roles they play at work, and the types of tasks they perform. So, I think that there will always be a need for a variety of office configurations even if some configurations are more prevalent than others. For example, those who deal with sensitive information and interactions (like lawyers, doctors, and therapists) will continue to need a private office. This infographic is surely thought-provoking. Check it out and let me know what you think!
During the course of blogging, I’ve been surprised by how often my previous post about sleep, “Why I Stay Up Late and 3 Reasons You Should Too [Satire],” which celebrates the experiences of people with late chronotypes (also known as “night owls”), has been visited. To spread awareness about another aspect of sleep-wake biorhythms, this post presents information about why it’s important for those of us who truly need 10 or more hours of sleep a night (dubbed “long sleepers”) to get the sleep we need.
Before going further, I’d like to point out that it’s important to resolve any underlying issues (sleep apnea, depression, or other medical conditions) that may be causing someone to sleep for more hours than is normal. If medical conditions have been ruled out, if the long hours of sleep have been consistent and of high quality sleep throughout life, and if the sleeper wakes feeling refreshed, this individual might be a “long sleeper” – a category that describes about 2% of the population (see here). More facts about long sleeping from the American Sleep Association follow: Read more of this post
Online collaboration tools empower us by providing the opportunity to maintain a presence in multiple locations at once. This concept is illustrated by the latest video created by the Flipside Workspace team. To truly appreciate the rich scenery and immersive experience however, don’t just watch the video… give Flipside a try! Having done so myself, I can tell you that this platform holds special appeal to untold numbers of Generation X and Y members who’re already adept at navigating interactive virtual environments. In other words, we can take to this like a fish takes to water.
Sometimes when working in an alternative workstyle, you really do need to be in two places at once. As a consultant, it’s the only way to be productive AND responsive to your geographically dispersed clients.
Readers of this blog know we created Flipside Workspace as the online collaboration platform for the consulting arm of Duncan+Coleverria, Inc. It’s worked so well for us, we’re slowly opening it up to other companies and small businesses. We decided to approach the introduction of Flipside Workspace using video, since most people have difficulty grasping the concept of using virtual worlds in a business setting.
It’s too early to tell if we’ve been successful, but we did have a lot of fun creating this. We put our blood, sweat, and tears into making it just right. Soon, Anna Marie (AKA The Awkard Gawker) will be writing about how we put this together in…
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Since the rise of the Industrial Age, the vast majority of the population have chosen to go with regular employment in order to make a living due to existing incentives (e.g., pensions, benefits, etc.). Since this trend has been the norm for quite some time, self-employment has become perceived as “the ugly stepchild” – something people turn to when they “can’t get a job.” It’s true that a good contingent of people are forced into this situation, however there are still many who purposely choose it. Are they crazy?
Often I’ve heard that those who prefer regular employment and those who prefer self-employment don’t understand each other. Indeed, it seems to be the case of different values, motivations, and fears. I believe this gap between those who have an employee mindset and those who have a self-employment mindset is encapsulated well by one of my favorite Aesop’s fables, “The Dog and the Wolf.” For those who are unfamiliar with this story, here it is in the video below: Read more of this post
To begin with, I’d like to make sure readers know that one of my strongest personal convictions is, “It takes all kinds of people to make the world go round.” I respect morning and night people equally. Really, I don’t care whether someone goes to sleep early and wakes up early or goes to sleep late and wakes up late. That said, for the past week I found this post, Why I Wake Up Early and 3 Reasons You Should Too by CNBC Correspondent Julia Boorsin, along with responses to it very amusing. Surely there is a lot of truth to this as many “morning larks” seem to agree. However, if you are a true “night owl” then this may not square with your experiences. Secondly, I’m well aware that the word “should” can get you in so much trouble with people and want to make it clear at the outset that I don’t think it’s healthy to be functioning in a way that is unsustainable in the long-term. So don’t take this post too seriously!
Without further ado, and out of fairness, here are my words of support for night owls! Why I stay up late and 3 reasons you “should” <rolls eyes> too: Read more of this post
I just love this wonderful depiction of realities associated with working from home that has been displayed by Marieke Guy. I’ve heard a lot about these same distractions and concur that such problems are very real. Regardless of distractions at home vs. at a centralized office however, what puts working at home over working at an office for me is greater freedom to exercise control over distractions at home whereas making environmental changes at an office necessitates an approval process (involving a greater number of other people’s needs and wants), the result of which might not go your way.
I’d also love for this graphical representation of work-at-home distractions to include distractions experienced by regular office workers for a visual, side-by-side comparison. I’d start that list off with frequently experienced distractions and time-wasters (cutting into time spent being productive for employee and employer alike I might add) from the beginning of the day due to the requirement to commute: (1) finding misplaced car keys, (2) getting out of car and running back to make sure front door is locked, (3) circling back around to make sure garage is closed, (4) circling back around to pick up a forgotten item you’re supposed to bring to work… I better stop here or it’ll be a long time before I get on with the rest of my life, haha! Plus, I’m sure the large numbers of office workers out there can mentally fill in the rest. 😛
Internetprovider.org have created a new infographic on
The Work From Home Disadvantage. It takes a global look at the challenges of remote working: distractions, noise, equipment problems, bad internet connection, bad posture and so on.
Some of the issues rang true for me. Since our move almost 2 years ago we have suffered from ‘temperamental broadband’ – it’s a little like a teenager and has its good days and bad days! I also have a couple of very demanding cats (open the door, close the door, and repeat) and I’m not convinced that my desk set up is that great, so do get a lot of back pain. But I still believe the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages!
Over the weekend, I went on a YouTube binge trying to identify the most informative videos on the future of work. This actually took quite a bit of time investment but guess I’m just obsessive like that! I selected the following videos on the basis of quality of content as well as diversity of opinions, hoping to cover the positive and negative aspects of work in the near future. These videos were also selected for conciseness as I know that not everyone can (or wants to) watch a bunch of hour-long videos (although there are some great lectures out there!). I’ve listed the videos in no particular order and have, instead, attempted categorization on the basis of what target audience might be most interested. They are all still worth watching regardless of who you are however! Enjoy! Read more of this post