Month: November 2013
An amusing story doing the rounds this week concerns the singer R Kelly who has found himself having to deny claims that he outsourced a personal appearance in Louisiana to an impersonator, leaving thousands of fans up in arms.
This might be an extreme anecdote, but it does highlight the still-relevant question of which tasks are appropriate to outsource. While most might agree that performances and personal appearances are probably best not outsourced, there are a whole range of other ‘personal’ tasks which fall into this area of debate. An acquaintance of mine regularly makes money by picking up the slack for tired, sick or – in one or two cases – nonexistent bloggers and yet another celebrity, actor Danny Dyer has recently complained about being vehemently criticised for misogynistic content in a column he claims he never wrote. These tasks tend to be grey areas – many people and organisations outsource them – but the flip side is that as soon as audiences discover what they see as a deception, they feel cheated.
In a more corporate context, we’ve been reading about an employee who outsourced his coding job in China, paying them 20% of his salary for work which exceeded his employer’s expectations. When discovered, however, he was dismissed for breach of contract. The likes of commentator Tim Ferris would describe this individual as pioneering a great new way of working, but ultimately his bosses felt duped. Again, it’s an interesting grey area and, alongside the issue of what to outsource, raises the question of who should do the outsourcing.
These questions are just another example of the complexity engendered by our increasingly connected world where technology and connectivity are rapidly outstripping our ability to change the way we think about ways of working. The good news is that where technology goes, attitudes are bound to follow. So who knows, by 2030, outsourced concerts might be all the rage.
- Top Outsourcing Disadvantages (ian6steyn.wordpress.com)
- Outsourcing – the alternative to hiring people (robertwellsportfolio.wordpress.com)
- Why Outsourcing for Busbars Could Make Sense For You (hvwooding.wordpress.com)
by Emma Birchall, Head of Research, Future of Work
The Hot Spots Team was at the Thinkers 50 Event earlier this week, where Professor Lynda Gratton was ranked #14 on the list of top management thinkers.
Lynda also participated in a panel debate at the event alongside Amy Edmondson of Harvard Business School, author Tammy Erickson and Stew Friedman from Wharton School of Business. During the debate, Lynda highlighted the fact that although longer life expectancy is one of the most important issues organisations will face in future, few are preparing for it:
“Longevity will be one of the most important issues we face. It will affect everyone and organisations are extremely ill-prepared.”
The event also included an awards ceremony where award-winner Clayton Christensen delivered a moving acceptance speech in which he reminded business professionals and academics alike of the value of time for balance and reflection in our working lives and the unrivalled importance of deep and meaningful relationships with family and friends to provide the support for creativity and success in our careers.
- The 15 Most Influential Thinkers In Business (businessinsider.com)
- The World’s Most Influential Business Thinkers 2013 (forbes.com)
- Canada among top in list of world business thinkers (theglobeandmail.com)
- World’s most influential management thinkers (venitism.blogspot.com)
- Peter Drucker Forum 2013: “The Top Mangement Perspective: Is Complexity on the Agenda?” (globaleduc.wordpress.com)
by Emma Birchall, Head of Research, Future of Work
Our theme for October was Collaboration, so we asked our newsletter readers to share some of their thoughts and experiences around that topic. One of the responses we received was from Brian Snowdon, Learning and Development Manager at Insight Investment, who gave us a really fascinating perspective into how even the language used around collaboration can be challenged by diversity. He says:
“Even the title of the article itself threw up a pertinent example of cultural difference – working previously in a pan-European organisation, a corporate value title of “Collaboration” had very different connotations for people in France and Holland, notably in age groups that had a recollection of the 1940s. We chose to use “Working together” instead.”
Our theme for November is Meaningful Work – if you have any interesting examples or experiences on this topic, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for a chance to appear on our blog or in our newsletter. We’d love to hear from you!
If you haven’t done so yet, sign up to our newsletter for the latest insights into collaboration, engagement, workplace diversity and the Future of Work.
- INSIGHT Into Diversity Magazine and NADOHE Announce Formal Collaboration (prweb.com)
- The Science of Innovation: 4 Ways Big Data Informs Innovative Processes (business2community.com)