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Each week I’m going to provide a round up of what I consider to be important and interesting articles on the future of work (not authored by me). These will include a variety of sources and topics ranging from workplace practices to robots and automation to leadership and everything in between. There’s a lot of information out there so I’m hoping that these weekly round ups will help make life a bit easier for you by giving you just the good stuff. Let’s get into it!

Why Companies Are Suddenly Investing Billions On Their Workplaces

In a time where it feels like a majority of workers would love to be able to work from home, why are companies suddenly investing billions of dollars on new buildings and work spaces? This article by Mark Crowley discusses a study recently done by Herman Miller where a team spent the past few years researching the future of work to find the answers to some burning questions. They wanted to find out if the traditional workplace would survive and stay the same in the future of work, if a majority of people will work from home and be satisfied, and find out what factors play into the happiness and success of employees.

In their study over the past few years they found that while a lot of people will end up working remotely in some way, there are certain fundamental needs that we all have as humans that are only fulfilled in a workplace with co-workers. This is why companies such as Amazon and Google are investing large amounts of money in building new work spaces for their employees.

It appears that while companies are changing due to technology and other advances, our wants and needs as humans will never change. Because of this the traditional workplace will have to evolve a little, but they will not disappear anytime soon.


Heineken Releases Hilariously Eccentric HR Campaign

Heineken recently released it’s latest HR campaign video and it is causing quite a stir because of how unconventional it is. The video is extremely fast paced and as the author of this article points out, sounds almost like a Dr. Suess book.

The video lists out 12 questions, all of which must be answered by the applicant within 3-5 seconds. The answers to these questions build a profile of your personality based on the Enneagram model. In order to apply a candidate must provide this personality profile along with their resume when applying for a job at Heineken.

So why are they taking an unconventional approach to hiring? According to Jessica Kersten, the creative director behind the video, “Heineken revolves around the personality of their employees, and they want these personalities to thrive. That’s the main message that had to come across in a way that stands out from all other HR campaigns”.

Does taking a unique approach to hiring pay off? Kersten believes that watching this video will help people realize that either, yes this is definitely a company I could work for, or no this isn’t for me. Time will tell how effective it will be, however one thing is for sure, it is getting a lot of buzz for being unique.


The Most Basic Thing Millennials Can do to Impress Their Bosses

In this article, Greg Hyslop the chief technology officer of The Boeing Company, describes one key skill that Millennials can possess to stand out in the workplace. That key skill is perseverance.

Hyslop states that in today’s workforce perseverance is hard to come by. He talks about his job at Boeing and how most of the things they have accomplished have taken years to get to and have only been achieved because of their team’s perseverance.

He shows how problem solving at work can take a long time and how a certain project could take many, many years. If you don’t see a project through to the end you won’t learn the valuable lessons about the successes and failures along the way. You won’t be able to see how the decisions you made in the beginning effected the results in the end.


Six Very Clear Signs That Your Job is Due to be Automated

This article by Thomas Davenport and Julia Kirby discusses six signs that you should pay attention to in order to determine if your job is on the path to automation.

They compare the narrator’s thoughts in The War of the Worlds regarding how he should have reacted sooner to the impending doom to our current situation. They ask if we are paying attention and doing what we can to prevent our jobs from becoming automated.

The six signs they discuss are jobs that involve little physical contact or manipulation of things, it involves answering data-dependent questions, it involves quantitative analysis, consistent performance is critical to your role, it involves creation of data-based narratives and there are well-defined rules for performing the work.

They say that if these attributes describe the type of work you are doing, you should be cautious as these types of jobs could easily be taken over by automated machines. Jobs such as working on the line at a factory or data entry could fall into this category. However, jobs such as nurses or authors which require a lot of physical contact and/or qualitative data should be safe as machines most likely will not be able to do this type of work.

Thomas Davenport and Julia Kirby also have a book entitled Only Humans Need Apply: Winners and Losers in the Age of Smart Machines. In their book they go into more detail about automation and they give 5 strategies that people can use to make themselves irreplaceable in the workplace.

Jacob Morgan is a keynote speaker, author, and futurist. You can invite Jacob to keynote your next conference, subscribe to his videos on Youtube, check our his podcast, or subscribe to his newsletter!