A top Microsoft UK exec has claimed in a new book that the current status quo for work is totally broken – and that the way forward for productivity relies in harnessing advances in technology and flexibility, rather than the traditions of hierarchy.
Chief envisioning officer of Microsoft UK, Dave Coplin, said “the future of work must be based on being open, on focusing on results, not process and on empowerment, not hierarchy”.
He backs up his point quoting a YouGov survey that said almost half of all British office workers have a manager that judges performance by the number of processes completed. Almost a third said their company doesn’t support flexible working at all.
Coplin’s book claims businesses are thoroughly entrenched in the old guard of management and dismiss new ways to collaborate. Employees, Coplin argues, are “not liberated to work creatively” nor are they trusted to set their own processes.
There is a block on progressive work policies and this appears to be management and the accepting of the status quo. Workers don’t feel engaged at the office, Coplin says, and are unable to utilise advances in communications properly.
“The massive risk here is that in a world defined by its processes and not its outcomes, working smarter is not an option and the only feasible other alternative is simply to work harder,” Coplin claims, adding that businesses should use collaboration and flexible working if they want to make the most of their employees.
Otherwise workers are simply being stifled by the monotonous daily grind. Coplin’s book, “Business Reimagined – Why work isn’t working and what you can do about it”, argues that businesses operating with an open mind will reap the rewards. Competitive advantage, Coplin says, will lie with those who can adapt to a changing world and increase collaboration.