business man touching digital wall with palm of hand
business man touching digital wall with palm of hand

A Revolution Made of Trends: Cambridge Dean on the Future of Work, the Workforce and the Redefinition of “Career”

Joe Kornik, Director of Brand Publishing Editor-in-Chief of VISION by Protiviti

“A revolution is as natural a growth as an oak. It comes out of the past. Its foundations are laid far back.” — Wendell Phillips, American abolitionist

“Within a decade, the nature of work and the workplace may bear little resemblance to the situation today,” says Mauro F. Guillén, Dean of the Judge Business School at the University of Cambridge and a professorial fellow of Queens’ College.

In an article he penned for VISION by Protiviti, the renowned author packs a number of insights and compelling predictions that both business leaders and ordinary workers should attune to.

Forget “remote” and “hybrid” — think “smart work”

  • “Business leaders and companies need to abandon old clichés about jobs and embrace the principles of distributed work and the virtual corporation.”
  • “No matter how hard we try, we will need nearly half of the labor force to show up for work at factories, transportation hubs, logistics centers, hospitals and schools — unless automation progresses faster than anticipated … Only after a series of geopolitical crises, natural disasters and public health emergencies in close succession have we come to the realization that we need to nurture a dynamic manual workforce with the ability to adapt to changing circumstances.”

Redefining the meaning of “career”

  • “For a growing proportion of the labor force, the sequence from school to work to retirement may no longer be the only pathway. … If one connects the dots across those technological and demographic trends, it becomes entirely possible that people may pursue not just one career, profession, or occupation over their lifetimes, but rather two or three.”

A multigenerational workforce

  • “As more people above the age of 65 postpone retirement, or do not retire fully due to the insufficiency of pensions and savings, we’re seeing four or even five different generations of employees working side by side. Forward-looking firms as diverse as BMW, The Hartford, Pitney Bowes and Estée Lauder are capitalizing on this trend by leveraging the skills of different generations within their teams and workplaces.”

Read the full-length piece here. For more insights into the future of work and other forward-looking topics, subscribe to the VISION by Protiviti newsletter.

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