To Stay Relevant In Any Industry, You’ll Have To Adapt To Changes

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Companies who want to thrive in the future need to adapt to changes before they become industry standards. And that can be hard if you don’t know what you’re looking for.

Looking At The Past Will Help You Better Understand The Future

You can use this guide to see how technology has always taken us away from hard, repetitive work towards more flexible, enjoyable work settings. That pattern will continue into the future thanks to flexible work-from-home policies.

How Do You Anticipate And Adapt Instead Of Fall Behind And React?

Want to improve your workflows and future proof your business? Take the quiz below and receive a customized workplace checklist that’ll have all you need to do to stay ahead of your competition and prepare for the future.

Take the quiz at any point while you explore the past, present, and future of the workplace.

Crossed out lightbulb

10 Centuries With Almost No Innovation

The plows that were used in Caesar’s time were about the same as those used while Washington was alive.

80 Percent

80% of England's Fallow land disappeared

England discovered that rotating crops and adding South American bat guano reintroduced nutrients like nitrogen to the soil. This made once useless land farmable again.

61 Percent

61% Population Increase In Parts Of Europe

The massive increase in the food supply led to an equally large increase in population which changed and grew the economy.

Agricultural Era

Centuries passed without any farming innovation. But eventually, the largely agricultural world saw changes to farming that would fast track human progress.

Farmer

For a long time, the world’s economy was almost completely agrarian. The limited innovations led to an upper limit in the number of crops farmers could produce to feed people. This changed during the agricultural revolution, allowing countries to support a significantly larger population, and therefore, a larger economy.

13 Hour clock

13 Hour Workdays

The Industrial Revolution led to long workdays in dark, dangerous factory conditions.

Million year calendar

345–280 Million Years To Make Coal

Coal changed the way we work, the way we travel, the way our economy functioned. Coal helped build the first steam engines that kickstarted the modern economy.

24 Percent

24% Of The World’s Economic Production

The US economy grew exponentially during the Industrial Revolution making it a world-influencing powerhouse.

Industrial Revolution 1:
Steam Engine

During this largely-European revolution, people left their farms to enter factories.

Train

During this first Industrial Revolution, the world saw a large-scale move from farms to factories where workers stood to make more money under more grueling work conditions. The factories were dangerous and dirty, but the pay would eventually pave the way for better opportunities for the workers’ children.

Train Tracks

254,000 Extra Miles Of Railroads Laid

The world continues to get smaller and smaller as travel becomes more accessible to everyone.

90 Percent

90% Of Certain Industries Controlled By Large Corporations

Large corporations owned by people like John D Rockefeller started appearing for the first time in America. These large corporations would set the tone for future companies.

Three Year Calendar

3 Years To Develop Morse Code

Sending messages written in Morse Code via a telegraph revolutionized the way we communicated. Everything from the phone to the Internet would be built upon the telegraph’s initial success.

Industrial Revolution 2:
Science & Mass Production

The world continued to shrink as it became easier to travel and communicate against vast distances.

Scientist

Science, mass production, economic growth, and unionization made working conditions for employees better and more lucrative. These workers worked more and more in cold, sterile offices alongside others doing repetitive tasks than in factories like their parents. The work wasn’t particularly fulfilling, but it was cleaner, safer, and it paid better.

Computer Desk

1930s: The Decade Modern Offices Became The Norm

The growing economy required a lot of paperwork and logistics and those needs led to the creation of the modern office. The entire management apparatus became commonplace by the early 1900s.

Airplane

WWII: When Status Came To The Workplace

After WWII the workplace became more competitive. Companies started making themselves more appealing by creating attractive, friendly work environments to lure top talent.

Business Suits

1960s: When The Office As We Know It Came Into Existence

Scientific management was replaced by human resources, Workers were given allotted breaks and had coworkers whom they worked with on specific projects. The workforce became more social and friendly.

Industrial Revolution 3:
Rise Of Electronic Technology

Parents, who worked hard in factories, gave their children the necessary education they needed so they could work in more comfortable offices doing paperwork instead of hard labor.

Computer

Although still a workplace, the office became more and more people-friendly. People regularly socialize around the watercooler and work bowling leagues begin to materialize. In many ways, the office becomes a primary vehicle for social interaction.

Lightbulb with brain

1980: The Groundwork For The Knowledge Economy

The Bayh-Dole Act of 1980 allowed universities to keep the titles to their innovations and issue exclusive licenses to use them. This Act fundamentally changed how we valued ideas and processes.

30 Percent

30% Of The Global Population Uses Social Media To Communicate

The internet has revolutionized how we share ideas, goods, and services with one another. And social media has taken those changes a step further by making everyone a consumer and producer of media.

25 Percent

25% Of Jobs Face Potential Automation

More and more jobs, and specific tasks, are being automated, and many others will continue to be automated. This makes a more efficient workplace that requires more human creativity and less grunt work.

Industrial Revolution 4:
The Present &
The Digital Revolution

The world became even smaller and work-based communications became more immediate thanks to the internet and various cultural changes.

Computer Chip

The internet has made the world smaller than ever before while bringing people over the world closer together. It’s made communication instantaneous and created a need for 24/7 support.

Virus

1 Pandemic Forced Companies To Reimagine The Workplace

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many companies to create work-from-home policies out of whole cloth, and employees are discovering that they love the extra flexibility WFH gives them.

20 Percent

20% Of Americans Consider Leaving The Workplace Over Childcare Problems

More and more employees are seeking greater work-life balance as it has become more difficult to raise children while working.

7

7 New Realities Companies Must Deal With

Experts agree that most companies must deal with 7 unique issues, exponential organizational growth, lifelong reinvention, an unleashed workforce, technology, talent, & transformation, the ethics of work & society, nimble enterprise, and regulated innovation.

The Future Of
The Workplace

We expect that the best future workplaces will continue to leverage technology to give employees more and more flexibility to work where and how they want.

Couch

It’s hard to predict what the economy will and won’t do. But things like the sharing economy, improved communications capabilities, and a growing desire for family-friendly work-from-home policies indicate that employers should make work flexibility a priority if they want to survive the next work revolution.

Timeline

Home

18th
century

Agricultural Era

1750

Industrial Revolution 1: Steam Engine

1850

Industrial Revolution 2: Science & Mass Production

1880

Industrial Revolution 3: Rise Of Electronic Technology

2000

Industrial Revolution 4: The Present & The Digital Revolution

2020

The Future Of The Workplace