The way in which we work is changing. In keeping with the economic shifts of the modern world, traditional work practices are dying out and giving way to a more flexible approach towards working in which the individual takes a step away from corporate employers to build their own brand.
The mobile workspace
Gone are the days when workers were encouraged to enter their office and shut the door behind them. Encouraging collaborative working through an open plan office layout is not a new concept; however, even with fewer walls, on-site gyms and chic rest areas, the office still comes with a stuffy reputation.
Companies such as OfficeRiders are moving away from the notion of a fixed workplace in line with the theory that real work can happen just about anywhere and does not need a fixed, designated area; as such, these companies specialise in hiring out unused rooms in houses, flats or apartments to those who need a temporary place to work.
Small or micro enterprises are on the rise. Millennials want to follow their own path, not be another faceless cog in a corporate machine. Over half of the job growth between 2002 and 2010 in the EU has been attributed to smaller businesses of less than 10 employees, with this figure expected to rise.
Larger corporations have been responding with an increase in flexible working; however, whether this will help them to retain employees remains to be seen.
You are your own boss
In keeping with the collaborative, entrepreneurial vibe of modern working practices, we may see workers on every level taking ownership of their work with less supervision. In short, workplace management structures and hierarchy could be a thing of the past. Some may argue that this is a rash move; however, providing that there are transparent guidelines and expectations within which employees have to work, this could be a great way for individuals to take responsibility and flourish without restrictions.
Gigging and bidding
Freelancers make up a large proportion of the business market and their numbers look set to rise as new technology provides more ways to link them with potential clients. Many models currently exist whereby freelancers attempt to win a gig by outbidding one another; however, economists worry that this is not a practical or ethical way in which to work.
While flexibility and individuality are in, security and progression are out – at least in the traditional sense. Modern developments are helpful to many but others may find that their progression paths and protection clauses leave them very much fending for themselves in the absence of traditional employment structures.
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