How to prepare for the future of work – human-machine collaboration, humanisation, education

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Today’s Australian Financial Review features an article Ross Dawson on the future of work (and how to prepare for it), drawing on an interview with me.

Direct quotes from me in the article include:

“Human history is all about the automation of work,” he says.

“Right from the plough through to the spinning Jenny through to the automobile, through to any number of other inventions. They all destroy jobs. And at the same time we have always created more jobs than we have destroyed. The automation has been of jobs which have not been that desirable.

“There is a case you can make that we will continue to be a prosperous society and have meaningful work because we are continuing to unfold work which plays to our uniquely human capabilities.”

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Vivid Sydney: Flexibility, diversity, and productivity at the heart of the future of work

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Next week I am doing the keynote at a Vivid Sydney event titled The End of Nine to Five, organized by Gemini3, a job share matching technology company, in collaboration with EY Australia and Hermann International Asia.

I will be speaking on Creating the Future of Work, looking at the dramatically shifting landscape for work, the distinctive human capabilities that will drive value, and the resulting structure of work required to draw out the greatest growth and contribution for our teams. In the keynote I will share for the first time globally a new framework I have created on Humans in the Future of Work. I’ll share more on that here after the keynote.

Here are quotes from some of the other speakers to give a sense of what they will be covering:
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Launch: Timeline for the future structure of the legal services industry

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Our shared passion for the future of professional services has led George Beaton and I to collaborate on projects over many years.

George has long expressed his view that the traditional “BigLaw” model for legal services firms is under severe threat. He has just launched his latest book Remaking Law Firms to provide clear guidance on how law firms can adjust and reshape themselves for success in a rapidly changing world.

Drawing on the concept of my Newspaper Extinction Timeline, George and I collaborated to create a timeline for the changing structure of the legal services industry over the next decade and beyond across different geographies.

The full description to the legal services timeline describes in detail the mega-forces shaping the industry, the research methodology, and the outcomes.

Here are the legal services industry timelines we created for five regions, with below the charts descriptions of the types of legal services providers referenced.

BigLawKaleidoscope-1_510
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“Government as platform” provides a compelling vision for the future of government and society

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Before my recent keynote at CeBIT on Platform Strategy: Creating Exponential Value in a Connected World I did a video interview with Alex Zaharov-Reutt of ITWire, shown below. The full article and video is available on ITWire.

It was a very broad-ranging interview, however one of the topics I touched on was the concluding point of my keynote that afternoon, on governments as platforms.

I have written before about issues such as the role of crowdsourcing in government, how crowdfunding could shift the shape of taxation and government, how we can envisage the future of government as a solution enabler, and the value of a framework for the Transformation of Government.
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Platform Strategy: How the rise of platforms enables exponential business

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This afternoon I am giving the closing keynote of Day 1 at CeBIT Australia on the topic of Platform Strategy: Creating Exponential Value in a Connected World.

The slides to my keynote are below.

As usual, the slides are designed to support my keynote, not to stand alone, but there is more than usual structured content that may be useful to people who are not attending my presentation.

I believe that the concept of platforms is enormously relevant in understanding how the economy is shifting today. In many ways it brings together the key themes of my books, including knowledge-based relationships, value co-creation, living networks, internal and external social media, and crowdsourcing.
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The rise of global remote work will impact health, education, and far more

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Today’s Australian Financial Review featured a section Transformation Agenda, including an article based on an interview with me, Health and education sectors the next to feel online disruption.

After opening with a discussion of connected work and marketplaces such as Freelancer.com and Upwork, the article goes on:

According to business consultant and futurist, Ross Dawson it’s a trend gathering pace within professional services like business consultancy, marketing strategy, IT services, even engineering and law. “Knowledge work can now be done anywhere.” he says.

It appears that this is another emerging sector where Australia is leading the way.

Sydney-based firms Expert360 and Skillsapien support two of the leading digital marketplaces for professional services, both of which Dawson sees as signalling a transition to “virtual” organisations.

“What is the role of the organisation today?” he asks. “Do they need to have offices with people sitting together? Is that the best way to source the best ideas?”

With the emergence of massive online platforms connecting millions of people it would seem not.

The article goes on to draw on my comments to look at many of the examples of how connected work is disrupting health, including CrowdMed, Doctus.com.au, and Dr Sicknote, and then closes with my comments on the impact on education, from an Australian perspective.

In the case of education, the online learning genie is out of the bottle, Dawson notes, with Australian institutions well placed to capitalise on it.

MOOCs (massive open online courses) have been around for some time with a fair degree of competition. But new opportunities are appearing in areas like professional certification, for which Australian institutions are well regarded.

“Education is and will continue to be one of Australia’s greatest exports,” Dawson says, noting that Australia’s fondness for and skills in developing digital channels will breed further opportunities in this and other knowledge-driven sectors.

Work can be done anywhere. We have reached the point where professions of all kinds will be increasingly practised remotely. While we need to ensure that potential problems are minimized, we also need to acknowledge the massive social upsides. This shift is inevitable.

The future of healthcare: big data, tele-health, community care and more

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During Australian Healthcare Week on March 15-17, I will be delivering two keynotes on the future of healthcare, at the Health Facilities Design & Development conference and the Healthcare Efficiency Through Technology conference.

In the lead-up to the conference, an article Healthcare 2020: what will the future of healthcare look like in Australia? draws on an interview with me to explore this space. Below are just a few excerpted quotes from the extensive interview with me:

On big data and data sharing

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The evolution of the CIO – the transformation of the role of the Chief Information Officer

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I was recently interviewed by Mark Pesce for Lenovo’s ThinkFWD CIO Podcast Series on ‘The Evolution of the CIO’.

The audio of the podcast can be found on the ThinkFWD website.

In the podcast Mark asked me to delve into the details of my Future of the CIO framework, shown below.

FutureoftheCIO_500w
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How the next generation – and all of us – will save the world

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I was recently interviewed for an article Why the world will be better in gen Y’s hands. Below are some excerpts from the article (by the way I’m not a Dr., but I won’t object 🙂 )

The impact of these powerful attitudinal shifts are playing out in the workforce and how organizations attract talent.

Millennials, on the whole, don’t question the concept of rights for women, gay and transgender people, that climate change is a reality or that every race is equal.
Their focus as leaders will be less on arguing a point than doing something about it.

“One shift is wanting to create a better world,” prominent futurist Ross Dawson told news.com.au. “It’s exceptionally difficult to hire talented young people if they don’t feel their work is making a positive difference. Social enterprise and innovation is very apparent in Silicon Valley but also in Australia.”


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Reinvent Australia: how can we shape a positive future for nations?

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A few days ago I attended the launch event of Reinvent Australia, organized by Annalie Killian of Amplify Festival at PwC’s Sydney offices. It was a very interesting event, digging into the issues of how we can bring together many people’s ideas to create better futures for nations.

Graham Kenny, President of Reinvent Australia, described the organisation as a collaborative initiative to create a conversation on a shared vision for the nation. The bottom line of its endeavors is to increase the quality of life for all Australians, by influencing government and business in how they work.

Kenny quoted Henry Mintzberg in a recent Harvard Business Review article, Rescuing Capitalism from Itself.
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