The Future of Work 2.0

Work – as we know it – is changing.  Your career success will be impacted by how well you keep up with the changes and how willing you are to make adjustments.

Tom Malone, professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management, talks about hyperspecialization in this Harvard video.  He makes interesting observations on the impact to workers and talks about managers learning a different kind of delegation.

Shamelessly Aligned with TGIM

You can find me online just about every day of the week on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and a few other digital networking spaces.   One thing you will never see me post is a TGIF message.  I don’t make fun of those who do, I just don’t participate.

Finally I’ve found a place where TGIM - thank god it’s Monday – is something to be proud of.

Eileen Chadnick is a life coach and principal of Big Cheese Coaching.  Her posts ask – and answer – this question: What is it to love your work… and your life?

You can check her out here.

Latest News From the World of Work

Curious about what’s happening in the world of work?  The staffing industry publishes a number of polls and research data to help us make sense of what’s happening now and what’s around the corner.  One such company with a rich library is ManpowerGroup.  They make their materials freely available via their online Research Center.  You will find white papers and employment surveys covering topics such as:

  • How corporations view social media
  • The demand for skilled trades
  • Recalibrating the corporate mindset re talent strategies
  • Optimizing your talent pool

Check it out.

ManpowerGroup Research Center

Servant leadership: Cutting through the hype

According to Wikipedia, servant leaders demonstrate the following qualities: listening, empathy, healing, awareness, persuasion, conceptualization, foresight, stewardship, growth and building community.  These are not qualities one can profess.  They have to be cultivated from deep within and their presence or lack thereof is clearly evident to others.

In the book Good to Great, Jim Collins calls this Level 5 Leadership.  He describes the level 5 leader as one who is able to “subjugate their egoistic needs to the greater ambition of building something larger and more lasting than themselves.”  Charismatic leaders are able to produce extraordinary results – but the level 5 leader produces extraordinary results that are sustainable beyond his/her direct involvement.  A level 5 leader builds greatness into the organization that continues after the leader’s departure.  For a level 5 leader the achievement is not about them – it’s about maximizing the performance of the organization.

Another indication of higher-functioning leaders is that their behaviors do not change in response to varying levels of maturity or performance in the people around them.  They cultivate meaningful relationships with everyone - including those they may have identified as not being in the right seat.

Self awareness is the first necessity for those with level 5 or servant leadership in mind.  Here are some assessments I found online.

A recent Right Management survey shows that there is a lot of unrest among the worker community and that an improving economy may herald unprecedented turnover in our organizations.  Hopefully we are all seeking ways to connect with our teams to make their worklife a great experience.  Promoting servant leadership is one way to truly engage employees, increase productivity, and make the workday more rewarding for all.

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Gigonomics – Wordsmithing The New Economy

Gigonomics.  This word is popping up everywhere.  It’s been popularized in Newsweek, the Denver Post, the New York Times…  Perhaps we’re attracted to this word because it sounds so new, so web 2.0.  The truth is it isn’t new at all.  Just ask survivors of the 1991-92 jobless recovery.

Gigs are part-time or short-term jobs and gigonomics is the art of juggling several gigs simultaneously in lieu of one fulltime position with benefits.  Since this is nothing new for an estimated 1.4 million people in North America (let’s call it Gig Nation), it’s no surprise to see gig-related words creeping into our vocabularies.

Gig Economy / Age of Gigonomics – Some writers are describing the current job market in this way

Gigocracy – People of the new Gig Economy.  What’s new today is the demographics.  Where gigonomics used to be the domain of the entry-level or freelance web worker, we now see the well-educated and well-heeled joining the ranks of the freelance community.

Gigs – “ a bunch of free-floating projects” (Tina Brown, The Gig Economy)

Gigwork – A snappy way to answer the question “What are you doing these days?”

Gigomania – I made this up – but wouldn’t it make a cool word?

Gigophile – One who collects gigs for the love of it

I don’t mean to make light of a situation that doubtless many find uncomfortable or even downright scary.  Perhaps this is an opportunity for each of us to reflect on our own career or employment situation and find new reasons for gratitude.  And while we’re at it, can we look for the gig workers in our midst and find a way to make their day just a little easier?