Tag: work (page 1 of 39)

Rituals for moving jobs when working from home

Terence Eden reflects on changing jobs when working from home and how… weird it can be. While I’ve been based from two different converted garages during the past decade, I’ve travelled a lot so it has felt different.

I can imagine, though, if that’s not the case, it can all feel a little bit discombobulating!

One Friday last year, I posted some farewell messages in Slack. Removed myself from a bunch of Trello cards. Had a quick video call with the team. And then logged out of my laptop. I walked out of my home office and sat in my garden with a beer.

The following Monday I opened the door to the same office. I logged in to the same laptop. I logged into a new Slack – which wasn’t remarkably different from the old one. Signed in to a new Trello workspace – ditto. And started a video call with my new team.

I’ll admit, It didn’t feel like a new job!

There was no confusing commute to a new office. No having to work out where the toilets and fire exits were. No “here’s your desk – it’s where John used to sit, so people might call you John for a bit”. I didn’t even have to remember people’s names because Zoom showed all my colleagues’ names & job titles.

There was no waiting in a liminal space while receptionists worked out how to let me in the building.

In short, there was no meaningful transition for me.

Source: Job leaving rituals in the WFH era | Terence Eden’s Blog

Presenteeism, overwork, and being your own boss

I spend a lot of time on the side of football pitches and basketball courts watching my kids playing sports. As a result, I talk to parents and grandparents from all walks of life, who are interested in me being a co-founder of a co-op — and that, on average, I work five-hour days.

This wasn’t always the case, of course. I’ve been lucky, for sure, but also intentional about the working life I want to create. And I’m here to tell you that unless you at least partly own the business you work for, you’re going to be overworking until the end of your days.

Hidden overwork is different to working long hours in the office or on the clock at home – instead, it’s the time an employee puts into tasks on top of their brief. There are plenty of reasons people take on this extra work: to be up to speed in meetings; appear ‘across issues’ when asked about industry developments; or seem sharp in an environment in which a worker is still trying to establish themselves.

There are myriad ways a person’s day job can slip into their non-working hours: think a worker chatting to someone from their industry at their child’s birthday party, and suddenly slipping into networking mode. Or perhaps an employee hears their boss mention a book in a meeting, so they download and listen to it on evening walks for a week, stopping occasionally to jot down some notes.

[…]

However, for many, this overwork no longer feels like a choice – and that’s when things go bad. This can especially be the case, says [Alexia] Cambon [director of research at workplace-consultancy Gartner’s HR practice], when these off-hours tasks become another form of presenteeism – for instance, an employee reading a competitor’s website and sharing links in a messaging channel at night, just so they can signal to their boss they’re always on. “We’re seeing… more employees who feel monitored by their organisations, and then feel like they have to put in extra hours,” she says.

As such, this hidden overwork can do a lot of potential damage if it becomes an unspoken requirement. “If there’s more expectation and burden associated with it, that’s where people are going to have negative consequences,” says Nancy Rothbard, management professor at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, US. “That’s where it becomes tough on them.”

Source: The hidden overwork that creeps into so many jobs | BBC Worklife

AI is coming for middle management

It’s hard not to agree with this. Things may play out a little different in the EU, but in the USA and UK I can foresee the middle classes despairing.

Legacy businesses will have to rely on retail and hourly support staff to be able to reduce management head count as a means of freeing up money for implementing automation. In order to do that, they will need to implement AI management tools; chat bots, scheduling, negotiating, training, data collection, diagnostic analysis, etc., before hand.

Otherwise, they will be left to rely on an overly bureaucratic and entrenched middle management layer to do so and that solution is likely to come from outsourcing or consultants. All the while, the retail environment deteriorates as workers are tasked to replace themselves without any additional benefits; service declines, implementation falters, costs go up, more consulting required.

Union formation across the retail landscape will force corporations to reduce management head count and implement AI management solutions which focus on labor relations. The once fungible and disposable retail worker will be transformed into a highly sought after professional who will be relied upon specifically for automation implementation.

Source: AI will replace middle management before robots replace hourly workers | Chatterhead Says

Image: DeepMind