Future Workspaces: Are They Better for Team Collaboration?
How often has the idea occurred to you – that you actually don’t need an office to perform your daily tasks? When it comes down to it, the only profound reason offices exist is to actually encourage collaboration.
And every little piece of the puzzle fits exactly: boardrooms created to host the many meetings we have, a small break room here and there or the kitchen is a place to encourage friendship and team building during times we feel disconnected from our projects or just simply lazy. What’s more, office hours complete the puzzle: making sure everyone is available, on the same page at the same time, in case we need to ask questions or engage in brainstorms.
But, Is This Really an Effective Collaboration?
For one, the 9 -5 schedules are known to not work for everyone. Depending on the character, some are more productive and work their best during these specified hours. Some of us are straight night-owls and we definitely are not on the same page with our dear morning-persons. At times, this may even backfire our collaborations.
Another thing to consider is the fact that being “available” has many times resulted in interruption. And, everyone is affected by interruptions. Getting out of focus is what we all dread. We need quite some time to get back on our missions. Sometimes, it may even become irritable and decrease our productivity.
Furthermore, the majority of meetings happen only for the sake of meetings – not really contributing to overall effectiveness. Most of the time, meetings are poorly planned and participants are not always paying attention.
So, Are We Stuck in An Illusion?
It appears we are entangled in a path of illusion despite having seen better. Digital alternatives are there for us and we continue to utilize them in our offices to ease our efforts.
Nowadays, most of our offices are a hybrid of the traditional with the new digital form of interaction. Yet, we have only adapted to utilizing technology within our offices. What if we actually can, and quite easily so, take things to another level?
With digital alternatives, meetings could swiftly refine. We’d be inclined to only organize meetings when absolutely required. If our meetings happen when truly needed, we’d be inclined to stay focused and seal our deals.
Apart from that, we’d also get to organize brief meetings with team members currently on work travels. To top it all off, think of all the clutter, confusion and disregard we’d save ourselves from!
The current myriad of video conferencing equipment come in less complex hardware, easy to use software, good video, and audio quality – we wonder why are they here only now?
Wait, How Are Digital Offices More Productive?
Well, for one, digital offices allow for more flexibility. Evidence has proven that greater flexibility leads directly to higher levels of productivity. And, what better provides flexibility than digital environments? Being available but struggling to address issues does not necessarily result in progress. Many times, this kind of availability has only been an additional element to further add to our anxiety.
Instead, approach the issue at hand when most appropriate or especially, when you feel more productive. Engage with your team for results. Thankfully, our new communication system allows for delayed responses.
Finer accountability – The leisure our digital interactions offer is: less stress, more accountability. That being said, most digital interactions are designed to be tractable. Our project management systems keep us wanting to participate more and not feel forced to do so.
Secondly, we have multi-communication channels – One can even take a walk with a remote team member around respected neighborhoods while keeping connected through a video conferencing device. This shows to be a very free-flowing, energizing, and personal conversation that usually leads to productive collaboration.
You can speak your mind more easily without being focused on deadbeat precision. Digital offices provide more options than our physical offices: emails, text messages, phone calls. Communication platforms come full-circle, encompassing: text messaging, audio calls, video calls, unlimited file sharing, unlimited participants. You get the idea.
Practical sharing – Sharing in meetings without relying on digitization is a tough cookie to swallow. With today’s tools, you can share and collaborate in real-time. You can work with your team on a document or any other file, simultaneously, without the need to explain and discuss for long futile hours. Isn’t that something to cherish? Additionally, imminent video conferencing devices offer quick screen sharing options. What’s the point of being there to show the laptop screen?
Are There Any Hurdles?
Perhaps the most impactful hurdle is to have every professional on board with the idea of future digital collaboration. Particularly, our elders. Therefore, it might take a while before we can fully embark on our digital workspaces.
What, then, is Our Destination?
Having explored traditional office setbacks regarding collaboration, as well as the benefits of digital workspaces, it is clear that the world is heading towards a tremendous change, where professional interactions will surely be more successful in our digital alternative.
Along with the rest of our humane necessities, face-to-face communication is the crucial factor that is also surely well taken care of. With digital workspaces time, money and comfort are on our side. Having topped that, what more could we ask for?
Regardless of whether you feel intimate or excited by the forthcoming change, you should definitely start getting ready for the future of our working world.