Have you noticed any changes in your workplace lately? According to a special report in Time magazine, you will soon. "The Future of Work" reminds us that the recession will (eventually) end and jobs will return — but when they do, they're going to look different. Here are some of the changes Time tells us to expect.
- The workplace will get nicer: It turns out, the way women work is actually good for business. The engaged, results-oriented management style that women typically employ has proven to be pretty successful in increasing both productivity and profit. In the same vein, more business school students are learning how to actually manage (and do so ethically), rather than just how to run a business.
- Managers will get younger, workers will get older: As Gen Xers (the generation born between 1965 and 1978) take the reins, businesses will become more tech-savvy and more global. At the same time, Baby Boomers will save less and retire later, which means the workforce will continue to age — the percentage of workers who are 55 and older is expected to increase from 17 percent to 23 percent by 2016.
To see two more ways your job could change,
- Workplaces will be more flexible and less cubicle-centric: Say goodbye to the traditional 9 to 5, Monday through Friday workweek spent in your cubicle. Employers are saving money and retaining employees by offering flexible hours, telecommuting options, and lateral moves, rather than conventional, climb-the-ladder promotions.
- Jobs will be high-tech, high-touch, and greener: We’ll see an increase in jobs that involve technology and problem-solving, as well as jobs in more hands-on fields like health care, education, and senior care. "Green" jobs — everything from manufacturing solar panels to weatherizing homes — could account for 10 percent of all job growth over the next 30 years.
What do you think about Time’s observations and predictions? Have you noticed any of these changes in your own workplace or career, or do you think you will?