Our ideas on the subject of sustainable change
The workplace is undergoing radical change. We’ve been experiencing this for many months now. While experts from a variety of industries predicted the change years ago and formulated a range of prognoses, you might say we’ve been overtaken on the inside now. The covid-19 pandemic has caused the development towards more flexible, digital and decentralised work to accelerate rapidly. Now the time has come: there is a shift away from standardised gainful employment towards creative free spaces, more individual responsibility, and formative collaboration. At least that’s how Frithjof Bergman expressed it back in the 1980s in his book “New Work, New Culture” and in doing so he paved the way for what we know today as New Work.
Thanks to the effects of covid-19, most office workers have seen for themselves what decentral, flexible work is like. Sometimes at the kitchen table, sometimes relaxed and empowered, sometimes under stress, trying to manage home schooling at the same time. This new situation brings a few challenges for employees, but for companies too. While people continue to optimise their home offices, companies are looking for digital solutions to reorganise spaces and work, with the aim of achieving efficient cooperation.
As well as rapidly installed outfitting solutions like hygiene screens or room-in-room solution, in many cases it’s possible to rearrange spaces to maintain distancing. Reducing the occupancy of meeting rooms or staggering shift times across the team are further tweaks that contribute to a successful hygiene concept. One thing that’s turned out to be extremely helpful is a digital tool for booking rooms or workstations and finding colleagues, which all team members can access from anywhere. Our organisation tool K+N SMART.OFFICE COMPANION performs these functions so that security and transparency are assured. As a result there’s far less need to channel time and energy into the structural redesign, and therefore evolution can occur at a more radical level.
“We’re now seeing the introduction of changes we never had time for before. But how can we ensure that their effects last? How will they fit in with our existing work culture?”
In March the majority of companies had to kit their employees out for remote working at short notice: they needed to provide hardware, find software solutions for meetings and consultations or implement agile working methods. In this high-action phase, no one thought to ask how a company is actually organised in terms of digital, agile, team-oriented and democratic factors. It’s a question worth considering now in retrospect, coming up with an individual response: does this new way of working suit us and our culture? Remote working will only become an integral part of the widely-publicised NEW WORK approach if it fits in well. It’s the only way to ensure that the changeover is genuine and equally supported by all those involved. The transition will only be successful if this is the case.
We also ask our customers this question before starting a project: how agile and flexible is your company, and how do the people there want to work? We invite you to find out, using our K+N WORK.CULTURE.MAP! With our analysis tool we can focus on various dimensions together, for example technology, leadership style, work-life model, creativity and agility. The results provide inspiration that will help to design working environments and office spaces individually. So that the changes you initiate at this point will stay with you on your journey into a successful future.