Show cover of Welcome to The New Normal

Welcome to The New Normal

In this series, we’ll be discussing the stories, the thinking, and the research... around the emerging megatrends that are shaping the way we live... and the way we work, as the economy recovers, and we emerge into the New Normal.


Should we all be working weekends?
Episode 20 - Would you like to be able to work seven days a week? Is time off at weekends non-negotiable, or should all jobs be flexible enough to get some of your hours done at weekends? One company is trying it out, and it seems to be working. But research shows that our free time is increasingly limited, and we’re a long way off economist John Meynard Keynes’ 1930s prediction that by now we’d all be working 15-hour weeks.
09:19 11/10/21
The ‘Big Quit’ goes global
Episode 19 - The number of people quitting their jobs has hit record numbers in the US. The soc-called “Big Resignation”, or the “Big Quit”, is impacting all industries is going global. In this episode we discuss the causes, why it’s affecting jobs across the economy, and what it means for the future as wages climb competitively, and may well push inflation higher.
10:46 11/3/21
Phone calls go the way of the dodo
Episode 18 - Employers need to accept that young people don’t like phone calls. News that ringtone downloads are in terminal decline highlights just how much the way we use their phones is changing, and what might have been acceptable 10 years.
08:46 10/20/21
Is there a future for TikTok’s video resumes?
Episode 17 - Will TikTok resumés become the norm? Probably not, given warnings about diversity and inclusion, and the advantages of text based applications. But how do Gen-Zers feel about this new trend for applying for jobs, and what does it say about
09:23 10/13/21
The paradox of big tech’s call for a return to the office
Episode 16 - Some of Silicon Valley’s biggest players want employees back at their desks. But what does this say about the very companies that have made millions giving us the tools to work remotely? 
12:03 9/29/21
Facebook experiments with virtual reality meetings
Episode 15 - How would you like to join a meeting in virtual reality, where your boss has chosen his looks and dress frem a 3D gallery, and where colleagues and clients make artificial gestures and smiles? Could this be any less stressful than back-to-back video conferences, with an added touch of nausea? 
09:00 9/22/21
Why remote work is the new signing bonus
Episode 14 - Research shows that companies wooing future talent are more likely to get the people they want if they offer the possibility to work from home, even if it’s partial, and it’s even more important than the salary level on offer. But succeeding in the new paradigm requires a whole new set of foundational skills that leaders must foster and develop to make it work.
07:12 9/8/21
Leadership and imagination needed to fight Burnout and “Boreout” at work
Episode 13 - Burnout is a growing problem for companies, that’s being exacerbated by remote working. Just as serious is “Boreout”, a phenomenon where employees are climbing the walls for want of something interesting to do. Why are these two phenomena so damaging to companies, and what can be done to fight them? What’s needed is better leadership, communication and imagination from bosses.
08:45 9/1/21
Working holidays – “workcations” – are not recommended
Episode 12 - What is a “workcation”? And why is it a terrible idea? A workcation is a holiday where you take your work with you, and apparently it’s less rare than you’d imagine. Research shows, unsurprisingly, that real vacations, where the stresses of the office are left well behind you, are food for the soul and essential for wellbeing.
07:47 8/18/21
Horizons broaden for digital nomads
Episode 11 - Digital nomadism is increasingly popular, with workers, some earning very nicely, taking to the open road, or the high seas, in camper vans, sailing yachts, or simply cruising from city to city to get a taste of a different culture while making sure the pay cheques continue to get paid.
07:28 8/11/21
Home workers head back to the office for free air conditioning
Episode 10 - Workers have been heading back to the office, but is it just for the air conditioning? Many others are running for the hills, looking for new jobs because their companies failed to invest in the right technology to facilitate hybrid work. Indeed, in April, way before the heatwave, a record 4 million workers in the US decided to quit their jobs. 
09:29 7/28/21
What the stock market reveals about the future of work
Episode 9 - The stock market may be the best indicator of the future of work, as investors bet for (and against) tech companies that are trying to make remote work as easy as possible. Research shows that there’s a lot at stake for CEOs, who need employees to be present to justify their positions, and managers, who are in growing competition with robots. 
08:29 7/21/21
Going YOLO and the growth of freelancing
Episode 08 - More and More workers are going YOLO - the philosophy that You Only Live Once - and ditching their jobs for new adventures. But is Freelancing the best way to achieve dreams of independence? More than a third of the 26 million  jobs in ‘non-tech industries’ in the U.S. could be done by remote freelancers. 
07:20 7/7/21
Salesforce wants its employees out on the ranch
Episode 07 - Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff wants to buy a ranch as a new location for meetings and team building, and apparently he’s taken his inspiration from Disney. As office workers shudder at the idea of returning to their desks in city offices, the allure of the great outdoors is a tantalising bet. 
06:11 6/30/21
What happened to entry-level jobs? And what’s happening to middle managers?
Episode 06 - The number of entry-level positions has been declining rapidly over the last decade, a trend that has accelerated in the last 12 months. The demand for tech skills has never been higher, something higher education will have to factor in. At the same time, technology is changing the game for middle managers, who will get squeezed out if they can’t reinvent themselves for the New Normal. 
07:40 6/23/21
US Federal employees look set for permanent hybrid work
Episode 05 - The US government looks set to make hybrid working permanent for many federal employees and contractors. But research shows that if the hybrid model is going to be a success, it needs to be organised in a “human centric” way to protect both the well-being and productivity of workers. 
07:37 6/16/21
Happiness in the workplace, and why 150 is a magic number
Episode 04 - Machine learning and AI are increasingly present in the workplace. Will it make us more productive, safer, or happier? And as we start coming back to the office, what’s the maximum number of people we can relate to on a human level? 
07:51 5/18/21
Fear of missing out, mental health and a huge amount of money
Episode 03 - Is fear of Missing Out (FOMO) going to drive us back from home comforts to the hustle and bustle of the office? What’s certain is that a return to the shared workplace means a return to the commute, and whether this has a positive or negative impact on our mental health and creativity. 
05:36 5/18/21
Reskilling for the future of work
Episode 02 - The upheaval of 2020 has accelerated changes in the way we work and the way we live. What impact has this had on employment, and how many of us are going to have to retrain to stay relevant in a changing jobs market? 
06:16 5/18/21
Our relationship with physical space
Episode 01 - Thank you for tuning in to our first episode ! Cinemas are hiring their spaces out to gamers, and the humble telephone booth may have an augmented future. We also celebrate the 5Oth birthday of the email, and ask if there’s still life in the old dog. 
07:17 5/18/21