Tag Archives: Office Culture

News You Can Use: 4/12/2017

  • How Many Robots Does It Take to Replace a Human Job?

    The study’s authors find that the addition of one robot per 1,000 workers reduces the employment-to-population ratio (the number of people actually employed in an area divided by the number of people of working age) by 0.18 to 0.34 percentage points, and reduces wages by between 0.25 and 0.5 percent. On the low end, this amounts to one new robot replacing around three workers. The impact is unsurprisingly most pronounced in manufacturing (particularly in the production side of the auto industry), electronics, chemicals, and pharmaceuticals, among others. Perhaps most importantly, there were negative effects for virtually all workers except managers.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2017/03/work-automation/521364/?utm_source=feed

  • This Neighborhood is Transforming by Letting Artists Buy Its Vacant Homes for Cheap

    In Indianapolis, one block in the Garfield Park neighborhood south of the city’s downtown is experimenting with a different model. An arts nonprofit worked with other partners to buy and renovate vacant houses and is now offering to co-own them with artists. Artists will pay half the cost–one $80,000 home, for example, will sell for around $40,000. If they later move out, they’ll get their equity back, but no more; the house will be sold at the same cost to someone else, keeping the neighborhood accessible as the artists help make it more desirable.

    https://www.fastcompany.com/3069252/this-neighborhood-is-transforming-by-letting-artists-buy-its-vacant-homes-for-cheap

  • Labeling Workers As Contractors To Avoid Taxes
  • Shattering remote worker stereotypes

    “There is still a stigma that remote workers are disconnected from the rest of the team, yet this study proves that they are more sociable and proactively reach out to develop strong relationships. The new technology tools that enable communication and collaboration are motivating workers to pick up the phone, seek face time and create lasting bonds. This is the upside of remote work we rarely talk about,” says Jeanne Meister, partner, Future Workplace.

    http://www.cio.com/article/3185430/hiring/shattering-remote-worker-stereotypes.html

  • Why So Many Workers Prefer Their Remote Colleagues To The Ones In Their Office

    Herrmann might be onto something. In a recent study by the communications company Polycom, which covered over 25,000 workers across 12 countries, 66% said their favorite colleague isn’t located in their own office but in another one far away.

    Also:

    There is a fear of remote-work tools and policies, though. Many companies don’t implement them well, and wind up building virtual fences that hurt their projects’ success and limit accountability. When that happens, many employers think twice about going remote. Yahoo, in perhaps the best-known example, scrapped its remote-working policy in 2013 and maintained years afterward that that was the right move.

    https://www.fastcompany.com/40401697/why-so-many-workers-prefer-their-remote-colleagues-to-the-ones-in-their-office

Photo: Miki Czetti

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News You Can Use: 3/15/2017

  • New FCC chairman: Net neutrality rules were a ‘mistake’

    During his speech at Mobile World Congress, Pai said a “new generation” of leadership at the FCC is focused on “renewal as well as change.” The agency will return to the light-touch regulatory approach of the past three decades, he said.

    Pai touted his decision to end an investigation into so-called zero-rating plans, in which some mobile providers exempted some services from their data caps. Promoters of the free data plans have called them pro-consumer, but some net neutrality advocates suggested that plans may violate the rules against selectively promoting some web content.

    http://www.cio.com/article/3175766/internet/new-fcc-chairman-net-neutrality-rules-were-a-mistake.html

  • Building a Hard-Working Team Starts With You

    Once you have the right people, surround them with hard-working peers. Create a culture of “all for one, and one for all” prepared to do whatever is necessary to help the company win the race. Create realistic targets for them to hit by certain dates, and create a competitive spirit within the company, where people can show off their skills.

    https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/288954

  • The Making of a Podcast Network | Scott Aukerman
  • ‘Ugh, I’m So Busy’: A Status Symbol for Our Time (a follow up to last week’s post)

    The gleam of being both well-off and time-poor, the authors write, is “driven by the perceptions that a busy person possesses desired human capital characteristics (competence, ambition) and is scarce and in demand on the job market.” In a curious reversal, the aspirational objects here are not some luxury goods—a nice watch or car, which are now mass-produced and more widely available than they used to be—but workers themselves, who by bragging about how busy they are can signal just how much the labor market values them and their skills.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2017/03/busyness-status-symbol/518178/?utm_source=feed

  • Toxic Workplaces Will Persist As Long As Fairness Is Just A Matter Of ‘Compliance’

    But HR, on its own, is poorly situated to fix a business culture that is indifferent to (or in denial about) offering meaningful opportunities for advancement to women or other minorities in the workplace. As political scientist Frank Dobbin has argued, human resources professionals have long struggled to establish their legitimacy within organizations.They are rarely the locus of power within corporations, which instead resides in revenue-generating departments like engineering and sales, and in the executives that preside over the business.

    HR advises. Business decides.

    https://www.fastcompany.com/3068482/pov/toxic-workplaces-will-persist-as-long-as-fairness-is-just-a-matter-of-compliance?partner=rss

Photo: Justin Tietsworth

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News You Can Use: 2/22/2017

  • Trump eyes end to an H-1B system that favors largest outsourcers

    The H-1B lottery favors large firms. In the 2015 fiscal year, for instance, the top 10 firms received 38% of all the H-1B visas in computer occupations alone. All these firms, except for Amazon and to a partial extent IBM, are outsourcers. These large companies have the resources to submit enough visa applications to help ensure they receive a bare minimum of approvals.

    Also

    Instead, the Trump administration is hinting at changes that may end the random lottery distribution and replace it with a merit system. It could distribute visas based on wages or whether a visa holder was educated in the U.S. It could favor non-dependent H-1B companies — a legal definition for firms that have less than 15% of their staff on the visa — over dependent firms, which includes all the all the large offshore firms.

    http://www.computerworld.com/article/3167586/it-outsourcing/trump-eyes-end-to-an-h-1b-system-that-favors-largest-outsourcers.html
    H-1B advocate Sen. Orrin Hatch sets stage for new visa battle

    Among Hatch’s proposals are capping the number of visas any single employer can apply for, and requiring employers to attest that they first tried to hire an American worker. He also proposed something called a “shot clock” rule that will revoke a visa if it isn’t used within a certain period of time.

    http://www.computerworld.com/article/3171151/it-careers/h-1b-advocate-sen-orrin-hatch-sets-stage-for-new-visa-battle.html

  • To pay or not to pay: Too many victims say yes to ransomware

    According to the FBI, the collective amount of ransoms paid in all of 2015 in the US was $24 million. In 2016, it had jumped to $209 million in just the first three months – which means if the growth curve continued it would easily have topped $1 billion by the end of the year.

    http://www.csoonline.com/article/3168931/data-breach/to-pay-or-not-to-pay-too-many-victims-say-yes-to-ransomware.html

  • Preparing Our Economy for the Impact of Automation & AI
  • Why Office Perks Are Traps, Not Benefits

    Is it any wonder, then, that the “benefits” at so many companies aren’t benefits at all, but ploys to get you to work longer? Dry cleaning and laundry services available on-site? Great — now you can put in a few more hours a week, because your clothes will be cleaned for you. Free pizza for the long hours you put in on that important project on Friday? Fantastic — no lunch break, meaning more work we can extract from you. These so-called perks, in other words, tend to be Trojan Horses. While you’re chewing away on pizza and having your laundry delivered to your office, the company and its leaders are smiling because you are still in your office.

    https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/289056
    Interesting context for the last SourceCast Episode (59)

  • Why Coworking Isn’t Just a Rented Desk

    If you are not creating value for your customers, then stop what you are doing. We create value at Alley by offering massively discounted services for each and every one of our members. Most of our members are emerging startups and they need help, so we created a platform to help them grow. These services have been vetted, and all of the services we offer are from our members. You basically live with them, next door to your accountants or insurance providers. We also have direct links into investor relationships. We partner with firms such as ERA and Techstars to give the companies exposure. This is great deal flow for investment firms and this is wonderful for our members who need to raise money. I am proud to say that since our inception Alley companies have raised over 1 Billion in funding based on our last studies. This year, two of our companies have made it into the elite accelerator, Y Combinator.

    https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/289129

Photo: Redd Angelo

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News You Can Use: 2/1/2017

  • Is 2017 The Year Of Flat Headcount?

    As budgets are settling down and getting approved for many of the companies I’m on the board of, I’m seeing a general trend of much less headcount growth in 2017 than in 2016. In some cases, companies got ahead of themselves. In others, they need to integrate all the people they’ve added. In some, they feel like they have a critical mass of people and want to march to get profitable on current headcount. And still others are profitable and have realized significant operating leverage in the past two quarters that they want to continue.

    http://www.feld.com/archives/2017/01/2017-year-flat-headcount.html

  • Google Co-Founder: Take Chances, Pursue Your Dreams and Silence the Voices

    Brin encourages experimentation and innovation, just as one of his professors did when he wanted to leave Stanford to launch Google. But his career has taught him that the future is impossible to predict. He is cautious in his forecasts.

    “The evolution of technology might be inherently chaotic,” he said. “We have a set of values and desires today that are probably pretty different than before the Industrial Revolution, and different still than before the Agrarian Revolution. And we might continue to evolve.”

    https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/288046

  • This is pretty much how it goes in procurement:
  • In a tech-saturated world, customer feedback is everything

    Executives and product teams shouldn’t wait until a product breaks to hear from their customers. My team, for example, recently executed a high-stakes redesign and overhaul of our central product. While we always strive to incorporate customer feedback and interaction into our day-to-day work, we worked with around 16,000 customers to receive feedback on different versions of our new product. Our entire process was oriented around continuous customer feedback — and it transformed the way we do business. We now collaborate with 11,000 customers who give us a constant look at how our product helps them solve the challenges they face in their day-to-day lives.

    https://techcrunch.com/2017/01/20/in-a-tech-saturated-world-customer-feedback-is-everything/?ncid=rss

  • Why your “career path” won’t lead to your dream job

    You may wonder, then, what’s the point of setting goals, working hard, and ending up somewhere you never intended to be? How can you make progress if you continually break course? How can you be successful if you can’t even follow a straight line?

    Here’s the thing: The more activities you participate in, the more people you meet, the more opportunities you grab hold of, the more likely you are to find something amazing along the way—regardless of (or maybe especially if), your path is quite windy. In the words of the inimitable Oprah Winfrey, “Luck is preparation meeting opportunity.”

    https://www.fastcompany.com/3067259/hit-the-ground-running/why-your-career-path-probably-wont-lead-you-to-your-dream-job

Photo: Ales Krivec

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News You Can Use: 1/25/2017

  • Why You Should Recognize Luck’s Role in Your Success or Failure

    Recognizing luck also helps with empathy. When you over-credit hard work and throw the role of luck out the window, it’s easy to assume everyone else should be able to accomplish the same things you can. When you recognize the role of luck, however, you keep your ego in check, which makes it easier to look at things more objectively and with less judgment.

    http://twocents.lifehacker.com/why-you-should-recognize-luck-s-role-in-your-success-or-1791093753

  • Would You Want the “Right to Disconnect” from Work?

    …“All the studies show there is far more work-related stress today than there used to be, and that the stress is constant,” MP Benoit Hamon told the BBC. “Employees physically leave the office, but they do not leave their work. They remain attached by a kind of electronic leash — like a dog. The texts, the messages, the emails — they colonize the life of the individual to the point where he or she eventually breaks down.”

    http://lifehacker.com/would-you-want-the-right-to-disconnect-from-work-1790830015

  • How to Say ‘No’ at Work (Infographic)

    Too often, people burn themselves out by agreeing to take on more tasks than they can handle. However, overloading yourself with work can reduce the quality of what you produce. If you’re too busy, you may also miss deadlines. In those cases, the person you’re working for likely would have preferred that you had just said “no” from the start.

    https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/287746

    Photo: The Business Backer
    Coming out of college almost 20 years ago, I entered a work force that told me to “NEVER SAY NO”. Early in my career that was a major source of burnout. However, in the last 5 years, saying yes gave me opportunities and access to projects that were good for both experience and my career politically.

  • The Purpose of a Supply Chain Manager: The End Customer Experience

     The journey to understand that focus tells you what your business model really depends on. Too many companies don’t understand what customers really value and as a consequence spend a lot to develop low-value innovation, such as car manufacturers loading their cars with more features that customers don’t use – a phenomenon known as marketing myopia.

    http://www.scmr.com/article/the_purpose_of_a_supply_chain_manager_the_end_customer_experience

  • Bonus: Americans at Work: Philadelphia’s Municipal Offices

    While photographing in these spaces what stuck out most visually was the physical evidence of decades past, not only in the space’s aesthetics and architecture but in the office equipment itself. An employee can find themselves sitting at mid century desk working on a 21st century computer while referencing a ledger book from 1887. Philadelphia City Hall is like a time capsule no one is quite ready to put the lid on. Over time, as Philadelphia grew, more municipal offices have been built to accommodate the needs of the city. One of these offices—Philadelphia’s Municipal Services Building—is a more modern office building, something office workers of today would be more familiar with.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/photo/2017/01/americans-at-work-philadelphias-municipal-offices/513209/?utm_source=feed

Photo: JoshWillink

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