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Working 2.0 January 16, 2008

Posted by David Gillespie in work/life.
Tags: , , , ,

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about work life and how it has changed and continues to change. It occurred to me recently that, more than anything, I want a job that offers me genuine flexibility. I don’t mean able to come in at 9:30 some days, I mean if I want to work from Barcelona one week, San Francisco the next, I want a job that allows me to do that. Save for a few gigs outside of working for one’s self, the market isn’t flush with that sort of role.

The friends I’ve shared this idea with all stare back with the same look, the don’t make any sudden moves, we’re just going to call someone… look. I don’t think I’m saying anything new, I’m maybe just simply saying it, and that is the crazy part. But I was heartened to read this piece posted on Mavericks At Work (found via Seth Godin), which I’ve only just realised is a book (as well as a blog), which I think I’ll go track down. The really key take-away from it is a fresh look at working life:

Old version: work hard (for a very long time), achieve success, earn freedom (to retire and do all the things you missed out on while you were working)

New version: find work that affords you freedom = success

This, in hindsight, seems like a no-brainer. What in the above doesn’t make sense? It speaks to me profoundly, and to the very things I-only-recently-realised-I-never-knew-but-always-wanted.

The above is backed up in a new book called Why Work Sucks and How To Fix It, written by Cali Ressler and Jody Thompson who developed a working system called ROWE – Results-Only Working Environment. Essentially what they’re saying matters is not the hours worked but the productivity of those hours. The Mavericks blog has a more detailed run down, so check that out, and then maybe do like I’m doing and see if Amazon will throw me a 2-for-1 bone on it them.

I think we’re on the verge of something really dramatic and wonderful for people who enjoy their jobs but want to be able to enjoy them on their own time. It will take some brave operations to go out on this limb, but the rewards will be worth it. I know my boss reads this from time to time, so, James, how innovative do we want to be?



1. Simon Chen - January 16, 2008

David, we had our 2008 Planning Session yesterday and we discussed this very issue. I couldn’t agree more with the article – even though I struggle sometimes as a business owner to get my head around.

And if James won’t see the light – send you CV to us. We’ll hire you (joking James, joking….sort of 🙂 )

2. David Gillespie - January 17, 2008

Simon, to quote Tom Hanks, I’ll see you on the beach =]

3. Adam - January 24, 2008

Very useful links. Ta!

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