In curious of the breakdown for employment in our church. ACL people please take the poll and fill in the blank if your field of work isn’t listed.
- Write it down. – Encourage your team to write and share their lives with others. (More blogging!)
- Hire smart. – Hire risk-takers. You need people that are willing to embrace change.
- Bring in outsiders. – Bring in outside perspective to expand your thinking. (That’s how we arrived at our live-streaming technology for multi-site.)
- Be flexible. Very flexible. – The same strategy doesn’t work for every situation.
Many of us dread the office, even worse, the cubicle. Ironically, the cubicle was originally designed to foster human creativity, increase a new sense of success and vocational vitality. According to Nikil Saval, when Robert Propst created the cubicle in the 60s, he declared: “We are a nation of office dwellers. The face of capitalism had changed; the office had become a ‘thinking place’; ‘the real office consumer was the mind.'” Repetitive work was replaced by knowledge work and the cubicle was born to accommodate such work! By 2000, forty million American white-collar employees were using Propst’s “Action Office”–the cubicle.
Times have changed. Sure, there are still plenty of cubicles but in many cities they are steadily being replaced by coffee shops. Unlike the stifling effects of the cubicle, coffee shops and cafes can stimulate creativity . Caffeine, music, good food, other creative people, open-air workspace, people and culture swirling all around you. The new office is the mobile office, a land of open-air, ever alternating cubicles where creativity teems with the steam of each cappuccino. Richard Florida has argued for a next wave of work, seeing creativity, not knowledge, as new economic driver. He defines creativity as “the creation of useful new forms out of that knowledge,” and writes “in my formulation, ‘knowledge’ and ‘information’ are the tools and materials of creativity.
Are we in a creative age? Are cafes the new cubicles? If so, have we reached vocational utopia which all, non-creative work must only aspire to? Or is there a dark side to the new office, a danger in a creative-driven economy? One thing is for sure, firms and office managers are sending freelancers and employees to the cafes with a laugh. Who pays for the expenses? Coffee, internet, space, parking, food, air conditioning, drinks, power? A creative way to make a buck!
See Nikil Saval, “Birth of the Office,” n+1; Richard Florida, Rise of the Creative Class.
Tim Chester is co-author of Total Church
- Have you ever been irritated because there was a queue at the supermarket till?
- Do you regularly work thirty minutes a day longer than your contracted hours?
- Do you check work emails and phone messages at home?
- Has anyone ever said to you: ‘I didn’t want to trouble you because I know how busy you are’?
- Do your family or friends complain about not getting time with you?
- If tomorrow evening was unexpectedly freed up, would you use it to work or do a household chore?
- Do you often feel tired during the day or do your find your neck and shoulders aching?
- Do you often exceed the speed limit while driving?
If you mainly answered ‘yes’ then maybe you have a busyness problem.
- Over a third of people agree that ‘in the evenings I am so tired I just fall asleep on the sofa’ (Jones, 2003).
- One in five men has visited the doctor with work-related stress.
- Sixty percent of us feel our workloads are sometimes out of control. One in five feel this way most of the time.