Shift Happens – The Future Office / Library in a Connected World

6 thoughts on “Shift Happens – The Future Office / Library in a Connected World”

  1. Luis, Sharp and great thinking. Like I mentioned at the beginning of this year to you and many others. This will be the year of acceptance. Not just of the pandemic won’t just go away! That a virus 🦠changed us and going back to the office must be part of that.

    From my own experience I can tell you that going back to the office for a knowledge worker is the only think we do. We will have to learn new skills still. The shift happened, and will happen once more.

    I hear people complaining about hybrid work. But when you challenge people to come to the office there is always a good reason not too. And they are right. It has changed forever. The new equilibrium is not reached at this point. We need to move forward. We need to enhance whe way we work even further. Not just remote, we need to learn to collaborate.

    Technology enabled a lot. But it’s not the solution. We are the solution. People that lead the way and are willing to teach others.

    We need more leaders to actually understand what people need to work efficiently. And no, it’s not a 2 hour commute to be in an office. It needs to be purposeful.

    Hope to see many more of your sharp statements in your blogs. Looking forward to discussing them on your blog 😌

    1. Hi, Rob,
      Many thanks for taking the time to drop by and for sharing such wonderful feedback! Indeed, 2022 may well be the year of ‘acceptance’, but, then again, there is an opportunity for us all to define what kind / level of acceptance, don’t you think? Specially, in the context of the workplace 😅

      In a way, I am not really surprised about people complaining about hybrid work. It’s nothing new. We’ve have *ALWAYS* been hybrid, right from the start, so these poignant issues have been there all along, and if you’d ask me, I think at the end of the day it’s because we refuse to think, embrace & adapt to a digital-first mindflex, and, instead, we just keep insisting on doing the very same thing we’ve been doing for the last 170+ years! 😳🙄😱

      It’s super interesting you mentioned the point about ‘we need to learn to collaborate’, because I wholeheartedly agree with it. But that need to learn to collaborate needs to happen under a particular context and with a different mindflex than what we’ve done in the past: we need to learn how to collaborate asynchronously, not co-located, hoping collaboration via osmosis would do the trick.

      And for that need to learn to collaborate async, we need to understand how critical and important it’s to have the necessary digital literacy to now just get work done, but also in an effective manner. And that, to me, is where the struggle is, specially, with (senior) management /management leadership.

      The wake-up call perhaps comes from coming to terms with the fact that for as long as management / leadership don’t want to get their act together, we will ALL keep struggling, so we may as well start challenging (in a constructive manner) their leadership skills, because, frankly, if it has taken them over 25 years to merely get to where we are today, I wouldn’t call them ‘Leaders’ per se, but more ‘Strugglers’ who refuse to embrace and adapt to the inevitable.

      These brave new & emergent conditions for #DigitalFirstOrgs are not going to disappear any time soon; however, those leaders / strugglers … their days may be numbered already as per 👉🏻 (From 15 years ago! 😳😤).

      Thanks ever so much for the lovely feedback and I, too, look forward to further interactions and conversations over time on these topics here in this blog. Glad we are *finally* having the time to slow down, pause & reflect, converse about them and see what we can come up with! 💪🏻😎

  2. Excellent read Louis – thanks for sharing. It’s about choice at the end of the day – people want to be purposeful in how they live their lives and how and where they work productively and efficiently . The physical office should offer something different to a mere desk space or a serendipitous opportunity to meet a colleague who you haven’t seen for a while. A lot more. However it should also be acknowledged that not everyone has the privilege of a good space to work in a distributed way and welcome a return to the office particularly in big cities where renting or buying property is at a premium. Do we risk very divided cultures in organisations and how can we change our behaviours to ensure we are inclusive of everyone in the new norm wherever they may chose to work . Leaders and managers will need to rethink how they lead and manage. It’s a well trodden subject I know – but discussions like yours bring all those questions to the fore. Thank you

    1. Hi, Marie-Louise,

      WOW!!! I just *LOVE* the fantastic feedback you have shared above! Thanks a lot for taking the time to share it over here with us to keep up with the conversations! Lots of really good stuff! 🙏🏻😅

      I love how you used the word ‘Choice’ in there, because that’s exactly what it is all about, but perhaps there is a nuance in here we should not forget about: it’s about enabling (by management / leadership teams) knowledge workers to have that choice, as opposed to resorting to mandates, peer pressure or just plain obnoxious social coercion of trying to conform with the norms from the last 170 years when we’ve now moved on from that ancient times!

      Yes, I would wholeheartedly agree with you not everyone has the privilege of a good space to work in a distributed manner, but, then again, we should ALL use this opportunity to understand we still have the choice to make changes.

      This pandemic has finally shown us work is no longer a physical space, but more of a state of mind, so if we don’t have adequate spaces to work distributedly, let’s all use this opportunity to find better options for next time around: move out of those expensive cities and live in smaller towns, rent / buy larger homes to accommodate that extra office space, invest & work heavily in local communities that can support one another with all sorts of household chores and what not, reinvest accordingly to fit the needs of these new times vs. whatever we had before, i.e. commuting, food, attire, accessories, etc. etc.

      I would agree with you that IF WE DON’T DO ANYTHING to improve our own work spaces while away from the traditional office we would be having very divided cultures, but, then again, we would have us, and only us!, to blame for it, because WE DO HAVE A CHOICE. We are just choosing the easy way out where both inertia and not wanting to challenge the status quo keep winning towards the culmination of those divided cultures.

      I have got a round of blog posts in the making with which I will try to address these issues AND what we can do about each and everyone of them. They will be based on my 21+ years of first-hand experience of being a distributed worker, so I will be sharing what has worked, and what hasn’t, so that we can help enable both employees and their managers / leaders to want to do different and adapt accordingly.

      Some of those posts won’t be pretty, but I feel I am not ready to blog about those uncomfortable truths and bust the odd myth here and there, so that, at least, people would be aware of the choices they have ahead of them, in case they may not have made them just yet …

      Many thanks, once more, Marie-Louise, for the fantastic feedback and look forward to further conversations on these topics! 🙏🏻😅

      Fun times ahead!

  3. Great ideas as always, Luis.
    I wanted to comment on you bringing back your material to your own platform. I think it’s great. LinkedIn and the others have so much power already on our content, on what we see and what others see from us…
    If only they offered a great experience… but they don’t . So, congrats!

    1. Hi, Céline,

      Many thanks for dropping by and for sharing such lovely & kind words of encouragement! Much obliged 🙏🏻😊

      Yeah, that’s exactly what I have been thinking and it is not just that all of those media tools have got way too much power over us. Indeed, they do, but, to me, it’s much worse when interacting and conversing on all of those media tools with our own content, and others’!, is far too cumbersome, having to constantly game the system, just that we are ‘visible’ (=what an illusion! 😤), while we keep feeding the beast. 😈

      That’s what I wanted to do with my return to my blog here, stop feeding the beast, while going back to the basics of Web 2.0, i.e. blogging, and enjoy engaging in really good conversations, once more, without the burden of having to just keep up, or game the system, to share one’s thoughts and ideas.

      Thanks a lot, once more, for the kind comments, Céline!

      Keep having fun! 🙌🏻🙌🏻

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