Envisioning and shaping the future of work and business.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Envisioning the workplace of the future

3:21:00 PM Posted by Oscar Berg No comments
How will the workplace of the future look like, let’s say in 10-15 years from now? 

Here’s my 2 cents worth.

Flexible and mobile 

More and more of the work people do is no longer tied to a place. This is why we should rather think and talk about a work environment than a workplace (sorry for the somewhat misleading title). 

You will no longer think of your workplace as a destination, but rather as something that is omnipresent, available to you whenever and wherever you need to get your work done. 

You will have access to the digital services that you need to get your work done, using the device that bets fits the task and situation at hand. 

You will also automatically be connected with the people and information that you might need to get your work done, and you will never feel alone because you are part of a digital social context. Virtual proximity will make it as easy to reach out to a colleague across the globe to have a spontaneous and informal chat as it is with the person sitting next to you.

ONE work environment

The physical and digital work environment will be designed to fit seamlessly together and leverage each other. Today they are often not integrated at all.

So how will this integration look like? 

Let’s say that you will participate in an online brainstorming session with colleagues from all across the globe.

When you enter the room from which you will participate in the meeting, the room will know that you will have an online meeting in a few minutes. It will connect and communicate with the devices you bring into the room to get everything ready for the meeting. 

When say that you're ready to join the meeting, your devices and the room will activate the services you will need to use, such as voice, video and virtual whiteboard. They will connect you to the other people who will participate in the same meeting. 

The lighting in the room will be automatically adjusted as one or several projections in the room are turned on. These will allow you to see the other participants, as well as see and interact with whatever digital materials you will be sharing or working on. It will not require any fancy or expensive equipment. Most of what you need you carry on you, on your wrist and in your pocket.

Engaging and empowering 

Last but not least, the work environment will be designed in a way that it leverages human needs and behaviors and empowers us to reach our full potential, both as individuals and as a collective. 

This humanization of the work environment obviously applies to both the physical and the digital environment, since these are designed to fit together perfectly. 

Your work environment will make you feel engaged in what you do. It will allow snd encourage other people to recognize your contributions. 

Instead of feeling like a cog in a machine, where you need to adapt to the technology, it will feel like you have been equipped with digital super powers that extend your cognitive, physical and social abilities. 

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