The following is a sponsored post for Cloud Powered Work. All the ideas are mine. They just want you to think about this space a little bit. Are you?
I just finished up a Skype call with someone for his book project. Before that, I had a quick call on my cell phone while running an errand. I’m writing this post on my nifty Dell XPS10, and will upload it to the web by tethering to my iPhone. I’m working. If you saw me, if you looked over at any point in my day or saw me sitting on the park bench by the river, you’d wonder what kind of role I had. I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t think I was running a publishing and media company from here. At best, you’d guess I was an author (and I am).
The “Where” of Work Has Changed
I live in a former factory building. It used to produce upholstery for horse-drawn carriages before cars. Now it houses a bunch of creative people with jobs in far off places. I believe 97% of us (completely made up percentage, but probably not far off) work in a different town than where we live. Work isn’t here. It’s where our efforts go. (tweetable)
I used to work for a wireless telecom company. Near the end, they let me work remotely. Why not? I had remote access. I could do everything I would do at my cube somewhere else. And I could do it with fewer interruptions. Sure, some bosses were worried that I was milking the system, but only because they hadn’t figured out how to measure on production instead of attendance. Is that not the silliest thing, if you think about it? “I see you, so therefore, I will count you as ‘working.’”
The where of work has changed, is changing.
The Cloud Isn’t a What-If Any More
There are precious few examples of companies that have a legitimate reason not to use the cloud to power their not-in-person work. I had a phone call with a guy from India seeking to build partnerships in the US, UK, and Australia. He and I worked on Skype for a while, will share documents via the Cloud, and will likely never shake hands. And that’s how it rolls.
Prepare for No Cubes
Why sit around waiting for that time, business leaders? Why say “we need everyone where I can see them” when that’s the least effective management method ever invented? Why keep people tethered to office space and overhead when you can create a very responsive workforce situated where the best talent can be found, instead of simply based on a postal code?
Yes, some roles work better in clustered configurations. But all? Is that the right thinking?
There are no cubicles, at least from where I’m sitting.
The previous was sponsored by Cloud Powered Work, but the opinions are mine. Only mine. Unless they’re also yours.