After a year of writing publicly on this website, it’s time to take stock and see how it went.
A year ago, I launched this website by posting the article Why a Humane Future of Work, where I explained my lofty ambitions of contributing to a better, more human, and humane Future of Work by writing about it. This first anniversary is the perfect time to take stock of how the year went.
I had started writing publicly a few weeks earlier, at the end of April 2020. The pandemic was ravaging the entire world. We were in a severe lockdown in Singapore, I was both bored and anxious about the future, and I had too much time on my hands on the weekends, so I decided to write about it and post it on LinkedIn.
I always liked writing, but I hadn’t dedicated much time to it for ages. I realized then how much I had missed it and how good it felt to do it. My colleagues and friends told me they enjoyed my articles, which significantly boosted my morale (and ego, I won’t lie), so I decided to continue doing it in a more structured way, in my own space. I decided to create this website.
I´ve always had many interests, but I have a special passion for coaching, people development, humanities, and the future, so I thought writing about creating a human and humane Future of Work would be exciting for me and would have a clear purpose. As I have written often, without purpose, there is nothing, so this was important.
That’s how and why I created Humane Future of Work.
What do I write about?
With time the scope of the topics has broadened. I have written about the Future of Work, but also about coaching, leadership, technology, social issues like inequality, and deeper themes like the meaning of life and death, with a more philosophical ring to it.
It is all linked, after all. Everything I write is about the future, the corporate world that will inhabit that future, what it means to be human and humane, and what we need to do to develop the leaders we need to build that humane future workplace.
Future of Work
The Future of Work is a broad topic, much in vogue in the last few months in relation to the Covid-19 world and the “new normal,” or shall we say the new abnormal?
When I talk about the Future of Work through, my horizon is a bit longer term. I tried to look into the next decade and beyond. The further you go into the future, the more likely you will be wrong in your forecasts and analysis, as the potential for change, technological disruption, or a completely unpredictable event is bigger. It also gets more exciting.
As the futurist Roy Amara said, in what is now known as Amara’s law:
We tend to overestimate the effect of a technology in the short run and underestimate the effect in the long run.Roy Amara
The Future of Work is about analysing the signals of change, trends, and drivers that are impacting the world of work today, seeing how they might impact the future of work, and create forecasts (not predictions) that will help us get prepared, benefit from and, more importantly, shape that Future of Work via better organisations, or new leadership styles.
I have written several articles dissecting different aspects of this premise, like, for example, on the leader of the future, the drivers impacting the Future of Work, or the organisations of the future. I have also delved deeper into some of the drivers themselves, like the impact of AI and robotics on automation or the demographic shifts in today’s world.
In what is, for some reason, the most viewed article in my blog, we hypothesized about what the world will be like in 2100 and how our lives may change so far into the future. Obviously, it´s all forecasts and hypotheses that are bound to be utterly and miserably wrong, as nobody has a crystal ball to peek into the future, especially that far away, but it’s always fun, and can be very helpful, to imagine what it all can be like.
I wanted to collect and summarise all my thoughts on this topic in one post, the creatively and aptly named Future of Work: everything you need to know, but I think it was too long for a blog format, so it didn’t have much success.
I have lately been writing more about other topics, but rest assured that the Future of Work is still one of my main topics of interest and one of the main themes of this blog, so I’ll continue writing extensively about it. Watch this space for more.
Coaching & personal development
I love coaching and helping people grow, so I like writing about it too. I also think it has a vital role to play in shaping a Humane Future of Work. Remember, this website’s objective is not to inform the reader about a possible Future of Work but to design, shape, and build a better, more humane future. One of the main ways we do that is by developing the individuals that will be the protagonists of that future.
We all can be better. We can be better partners, friends, parents, sons, leaders, colleagues. We can be better people. When I say better, I mean not only more effective and better performing but also more caring, compassionate, and loving.
Self-actualisation, or achieving the maximum potential of the human being you can become, is one of the primary motivators in life. Again, that doesn’t mean being the best at something or focusing only on performance and neglecting all other aspects of your life. It means focusing on what is crucial for you and being the best version of yourself. You shouldn’t compete with anyone, you should compete just with yourself.
We do all this through coaching, mentoring, and continuous learning. I believe Lifelong learning is one of the main drivers today, and it will be even more so in the future. Coaching is an integral part of it.
I hope we´ll have better leaders and better people in the future, and I am trying to contribute to that. I feel that´s one of my main missions in life, and one of the ways I do that is by writing about it.
I have written about coaching as the art of asking powerful questions, the future of coaching, or the importance of vulnerability or emotions. I have highlighted the importance of self-awareness and how, if you want to change the world, you should start with the man in the mirror. Recently, I have advised you against giving advice and to listen more and ask more questions.
To build a more humane Future of Work, we need to go further than studying trends, proposing forecasts, and talking about coaching and personal development. We need to change people from within, from deep inside, and that means delving into profound themes.
That is why I have written about how each of us holds different values, which brings richness to life, but also creates misunderstandings and makes cooperation often complicated.
Inequality is one of those critical topics too. It permeates everything today, and it is increasing, both between countries and in countries, between different segments of the population. If we don’t solve inequality, or at least alleviate it considerably, something will have to give. It is one of the main problems of our times, and it is the root of many other problems. We should focus our attention more on solving it.
More recently, I wrote about the uplifting topic of death and about the time we have left in this life, which might be long, but is definitely finite. One day you and I won’t be here, our children won’t be here either, and the children of their children either, and nobody who knew you in person will be around anymore. Death brings some perspective to life, and the same happens with the limited time we have left. The message in both cases is the same, carpe diem, or seize the moment. Make the most of what you have.
Purpose has also been a common thread in my articles. I have written about the importance of purpose in your work and how engaging it can be to know that what you are doing is helpful for someone or something. The opposite is also true. Doing a pointless job with no added value for anybody, what David Groeber would call a bullshit job, can be crushing to the soul of even the most cheerful and self-motivated person.
We have treated that quintessential philosophical subject, the meaning of life, or lack thereof. We realized that each of us has the responsibility to find our own meaning and purpose.
I love writing about all these topics, and they usually are well received, so I´ll continue writing about the big questions of life.
The last year has been tough. Some of us have seen loved ones go, others have been sick, yet others have lost their jobs, and many of us have spent too much time alone.
Last June, almost a year ago, I wrote an article about mental wellbeing, which had a section entitled “How to stay sane when the world is going mad.” Writing for this blog, writing for you has been one of those things that have helped me keep some sort of sanity (just some of it).
I love writing. Human beings have a creative impulse. Creating things, be it objects or art, keeps us alive and gives us a purpose. One of the main ways for me to express my creativity is through writing. I suck in many other art forms, but at least I can string together a few words. I don’t think I´ll ever write a bestselling novel, but I can write my ideas in a blog, share them with whoever wants to read them. That´s enough for me.
Writing helps me structure my ideas. It’s a form of assisted thinking. If you publish your writings, then this assisted thinking is done in public, for others to see. You are allowing others to peek into your most inner thoughts, beliefs, and values. For an introvert like me, it has been challenging in times to open up, but it has been great learning.
Writing has helped me grow as a more vulnerable human being, which is one of the things I´m striving to achieve. I hope to continue writing and learning for many more years to come, and I hope it will be with you by my side.