Aino-Maija Vaskelainen: Research trips to the future of work

At the dawn of summer, it was almost in our hands until it flew away again for a while, only to return again soon. Maybe you can guess what. Back to something, but what? Or perhaps we are facing a transition towards something new? The uncertainty of taking the next steps is palpable in almost all organizations. My intention is not to confuse, but, if someone out there is waiting for a national authority instruction on how to be or not be at workplaces in the future, then you knew that there is not going to be one? 

The future is in all of our hands

Each of us has thoughts, feelings, hopes and fears regarding the future. How wonderful artificialthat's the reason! Namely, to talk. The topic affects us all. And how comforting that no one is supposed to come up with a ready-made solution for this. You don't have to and you don't have to. What if the plan was to listen to each other? Let people tell and suggest. Try small things together. Reflect on what was learned from them. What to continue, what not. Start joint investigations. Take trips. Go on research trips. Figuratively and really. Have a discussion. Speak your thoughts out loud. You're not in a hurry. You don't have to be "ready" by a certain date.

Organizational lifestyle change

Anyone who has ever wanted to change their diet, lose weight, quit smoking, start jogging, or do anything else challenging or significant, knows how difficult it can be to make even small lifestyle changes. It is the same for organizations. That's why it can be so difficult for us in a "stable situation" to make changes to our ways of working, especially if and when the change affects a wider group of people. In that sense, now is the moment. Our structures have been appropriately shaken.

3+2 days is not the future 

The discussion about the future of work and work communities is not a debate about how many days a week people will work in the office in the future and how many remotely. Challenge your thinking! Think about what things, steps, needs, etc. are related to different work tasks and look into the future with courage! Reshape work! When is it important to meet people and present cooperation and how to make those encounters valuable? Can we also take into account aspects such as well-being, brain health...? Ask for ideas and experiences from elsewhere. Listen to others. Tell me what you think. Understand that your co-workers, supervisors or company management cannot know what you wish for yourself. Do you even know yet?

Did you happen to think somewhere while reading why exactly I or Graniitti Services wants to take part in the future with this kind of writing? The change affects us all, and we at Granitti look at the future with great curiosity. In assignments, we always work in accordance with the customer's operating methods and instructions, but we all have long-term experience in different work environments, operating models and methods, and we are happy to share our experiences - so if my colleagues work in your organization, all you have to do is feel free to talk and ask for their thoughts. After all, consultants (not to mention project managers...) are notoriously adaptable nomads - have been since the beginning of time. Perhaps their views on your organization can be appropriately objective and bold?

The writing is inspired by numerous discussions, writings and signals related to the topic. It was given its final impetus by 15.9. organized webinar "How to manage hybrid work" organized by Workday Designers and Camilla Tuominen.

– Aino-Maija


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