in Work and Play
The New Workplace
Due to the number of baby boomers remaining in the workplace and the number of Millennials entering the work force, there is an increased tension between "old" and "new" ways of working. Many traditional ideas on how to get things done have lost merit, and a new type of work culture has emerged.
At a recent event held at Microsoft's Technology Center in New York City, experts in work culture discussed these changes. "We're seeing huge experiments now in major companies," says Adam Pisoni, co-founder of the office social networking site Yammer, which Microsoft acquired in 2012. (Fast Company)
The result is that there are more businesses practicing remote work structures in order to be more efficient and cost effective, along with affording employees a lifestyle they crave. The idea is that people who work at home can seek the kind of work-life balance that fulfills the soul and allows them to perform better for the employer and its respective customers.
With the never-ending list of connection devices and applications, this new way of conducting business aims to provide a competitive edge. Specifically, companies believe being driven by outcomes is paramount. And while books like "The 4 Hour Workweek" and "Remote" sit at the top of bestseller lists, those of us within the printing industry are not so quick to discard the old ways.
Our business is directly correlated to feel, and we have a heightened sensitivity to the impact of touch. So, while we readily accept the new ways of connecting within our businesses, we don't want people to miss out on the physical nature of engagement.
Certainly, a flatter and more collaborative structural environment exists in this new landscape, but the traditions of our industry remind us that there is no replacement for touch and feel. In other words, the new age of remote connection can coexist with the innate need for human touch.
The remote structure hints that bosses trust employees to focus on results and do not pressure people into the antiseptic nature of a 40-hour work week. There is no clock-watching, and people can incorporate work into their lives comfortably. But resisting physical engagement and shying away from personal interaction will disintegrate trust over time.
Human beings need physical connection. They need the warmth of a smile or the professionalism of a handshake. They enjoy running their hand across a finely printed piece and they love to feel the pages turn in their hands.
A clash of cultures is not needed at this juncture. A merging of cultures is the new recipe for high performing companies. In fact, the businesses that can provide the comforts of a remote work environment while simultaneously making a physical impact on others will thrive.