One of the things changing most rapidly right now is how we work. Exponential technologies are automating many of our jobs; pandemics are moving our office spaces into our living rooms, and the global challenges we are facing are creating new business opportunities. Working from 9 to 5 has been the standard for a long time. This is a legacy from the industrial revolution, but nowadays this way of working is pretty outdated in many cases. Why? Because:
- most work has transformed from being physical to being intellectual, meaning it’s straining in a different way than before
- the future is a lot less set in stone than before, meaning that we have to be more adaptable and switch between jobs and projects on a regular basis – sometimes working, more sometimes working less
So what do we do? How will this new kind of work look? Will we lose all our jobs to robots or will happen? Here is an interesting video discussing that question:
Opportunities of New Work
Several trends arise from this new kind of work:
- networking, creativity, and lifelong learning will be more important than ever as these will constitute our greatest job security
- work will increasingly become part of our self-development process. We will seek out jobs that challenge and grow us and allow our personal development to mix with our professional development
- greater flexibility in terms of working remotely and on one’s own terms will be established and supported through technology
- more people will become self-employed and project-based employment will become more normal
The potential for greater freedom, greater satisfaction, and greater contribution through the work that we do might be within our reach soon.
Challenges of New Work
On the other side of this trend are challenges such as:
- Keeping our work and private life separate which might cause an increase in stress and workaholism and put a strain on the family
- Needing to put more and continuous effort into being employable might also lead to greater stress
- Restructuring many old workplaces to make them more agile and attractive will require a lot of effort
New Work is posing a great challenge to all the structures that have been developed and have worked for a long time. It will demand a radical readjustment from everyone both in terms of mindset and behavior.
What you can do
The most important aspect of new work is its focus on finding fulfillment and self-realization in your job. Work is not supposed to be only about making a living; now it’s also about finding meaning.
- Reflect upon what gives you energy and a sense of purpose – and believe that you can pursue a career that allows you to engage in those activities and higher goals
- Find a work/life balance that suits your rhythm and supports your flow
It’s in our pirates’ code of conduct to #hijacktherules and questions the status quo. This is true for every aspect of life – also how and why we work. So go for it, pirate! Reinvent the purpose and the experience of work!