What does the future of work look like?

Due to the pandemic, the “future of work” may have been sped up to the very near present. Pre pandemic, there were over half a million small businesses in Indiana. These businesses employed 1.2 million people. This is nearly 50% of the people employed in Indiana. With the pandemic, many of these companies have been shaken to their core and challenged to stay afloat.

These businesses have been forced to take a hard look at the way they operate, and their employees are taking an even harder look at the way they want to work.

In the future, we will be taking deep dives into each of these categories individually and talking with leaders and experts on their ideas of how you can prepare for this future and work better.

Today we are taking a look at 10 ways the future of work is changing.

Large Offices…not so fast:

Offices are not dead, but the way we use them will change. They’ll be used less frequently; instead of coming into work daily, employees and employers alike will use offices as a hub of operations, a Head Quarters. Offices will be centered around the ability to gather for events and meetings. With this in mind, you will see many companies opt for Co-working spaces, subscription clubs, and other non-traditional work environments.

Remote Living:

Love to travel? Love quoting “not all who wander are lost,” well, you are in luck! Between RV’s (shoutout to Elkhart, Indiana, the RV capital of the world), tiny homes, #vanlife, and other non-traditional living arrangements, traveling consistently while keeping a full-time job is more than possible; it’s becoming a norm. Work from anywhere RVs will become huge business associated business parks and services will spring up. And if you think this is crazy, wait until self-driving tech emerges in the coming years.

Rural Living:

We already see Hoosiers move back to their hometowns and open businesses or work to revitalize downtowns. World-class people will move to smaller cities in our state; with a lower cost of living and higher quality of life, these regions will be more inviting than ever. It’s not all roses, though; this will take investment from both the private and public sector in broadband internet, better schools, and more. These are items that young professionals say are a must-have, not a nice to have.

Death by Meeting:

With every person you know forced to learn how to use video software like zoom, wasting 2 hours traveling to a meeting will end. While we don’t deny there are benefits to in-person meetings, we think the daily in-person meetings will end. Instead, a focus on monthly or quarterly networking events, speaker events, training, and programming that brings high value to employees will take its place.

Working on your clock:

Offices are distraction factories where synchronous work makes it impossible to get stuff done. Tools that enable asynchronous work are an essential thing remote teams need. Tools like task management software, CRM’s, and others will be vital in companies’ coming years to invest. Additionally, watch for a ton of startups to tackle this.

Hobbies, don’t call it a comeback:

Strap on those old cleats for your upcoming rec league soccer game. Remote working will lead to a rise in people participating in hobbies and activities which link them to people in their local community. With the absence of gathering at work consistently, we will look for other ways to connect with our communities to overcome the loneliness and isolation that working remotely can often bring. So look out for that invite to your neighbor’s bowling team, book club, or candle making class, because they are coming!

Diversity & Inclusion:

We know that you get the best of us when the company looks like the rest of us. Companies who embrace diverse and inclusive teams first will have a first-mover advantage to attract great talent globally. Companies that don’t will lose their best people to their biggest competitors.

Changing the definition of being productive:

Clocking your 8-10 hour shift at work will no longer be the definition of who is productive and who is not. Time will be replaced as the main KPI for judging performance by productivity and output. Instead, look for employees who can set proper expectations and then meet those expectations consistently. Also, we hope to see advancement decisions start to based on these capabilities as well.

Overworking and Burnout:

Conventional wisdom has been that the workers won’t work enough when operating remotely. But in reality, studies have shown the opposite will be true and become a big problem. As we all adjust to new work styles, we often overcompensate, and remote workers are burning out because they work too much and are constantly “on.” Companies that provide boundaries and clear expectations will have an advantage in keeping talented staff on board for the long haul. Additionally, look out for wearable tech to enter this sector and remind people to quit working, get up from their desk (or couch), eat some food, hydrate, and clear their minds.

Making health a priority:

On average, a lack of commute will give workers 25 extra days a year to do other things. Routines will become essential and necessary, and with those routines, companies that promote healthy practices will reap the awards. Fitness programs, remote yoga clubs, and meditation breaks become more popular as workers work from home.

If you are taking a look at 2021 and how you want to operate your business or work for your company, Refiney46 would love to be a part of your journey and help you work better. Request a tour today!