As far as it goes with the manner in which modern society engages in economic activities, there is definitely a paradigm shift. We are in transition with regards to how we work in particular, with the modern day workplace changing its face in a way that has it seemingly disappearing like a ghost.
It’s quite a gradual transition it must be said, but one which is definitely taking form to such an extent that it can most definitely be analysed and reported back on.
The evolution of traditional office structures
It’s not quite a case of the traditional office structures such as buildings getting abandoned or demolished in the wake of the winds of change sweeping through the modern day workforce, as many people might have quite radically predicted. Rather, something quite interesting is happening in that construction of iconic structures which are earmarked to serves as office-block shrines to capitalism has slowed down, while existing offices are becoming obsolete.
One would think that the existing offices would probably stand empty and collect some dust, perhaps with some of them going derelict, but that’s not quite happening. If you heard about a major corporation closing its doors in the wake of the digital wave bringing about its sweeping changes, you might be surprised to visit the site of that corporation’s offices to find what looks like business going on as usual, what with all the people who come there to do some work on their computers and perhaps even what looks like some front-desk, admin staff.
Chances are what would be going on there is a representation of the changed face of how we work, with the workers you see not working for the company that once called those premises its offices. These are remote workers, comprised out of independent freelancers, contractors, etc, who need somewhere rather office-like to go to in order to ensure they get the work they need to complete done.
The emergence of the digital workforce
I’ve had this discussion with a few of my work colleagues, some entrepreneurs I’ve met while attending networking sessions and business meetings, and just about anybody else within earshot, that being how as a species we seem to have slowed down as far as our development goes. Think about the newly-minted billionaires who join the ranks of the world’s elite. These aren’t people who come up with brand new inventions of some technologies which revolutionise the way we do things, are they? Rather, they’re people who perhaps modify existing technologies in order to create something of a new of way of doing something we’ve pretty much all been doing all along, like coming up with a new app, a new website, etc.
Nobody really comes up with something like a cure for a disease which has long since been plaguing us as the human race and generally anything which is developed is done so with wealth as the motivation.
So that’s why if you really think about it, pretty much all the work we do is pointless since it doesn’t really contribute something meaningful to society. This is especially true in the case of those people who work in the financial sector, who ironically pretty much hold all the economic power in their hands. It’s also true of those who work in the technology sector which is dominated by an increased emphasis on the digital aspect of things.
Sure, you build your app, or your website and it disrupts a certain field, but what has that app or site actually contributed to the development of the human race and how does it solve problems we perhaps shouldn’t be dealing with in this day and age?
Having said all of that however, you still need to do something in order to bring home the bacon, and even though your work may be utterly pointless in the grander scheme of things (if you don’t really help create anything of tangible value), you still have to do it in order to earn money.
So, in light of this, most of us work with our computers, which means the work we complete can be done so remotely and that epitomises the changing face of how we work today.
We have entered the era of the remote workers, who love to refer to themselves as Digital Nomads.