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The Future of Work – Richard Florida’s view

Dealing with knowledge makes the creation of new knowledge and innovation paramount. According to Carnegie Mellon professor Richard Florida there is a “creative class” of workers rising that make up 30% of workers in the developed world, and up to 50% in the US – as much as industry and service combined.  In “The Rise of the Creative Class” he writes: “They thrive of technology, talent and tolerance. But to develop the economy, the creative class has to collaborate through human contact and networks in real communities and places.” He highlights the need for tolerant, open communities as a basis for success. Stubbornness and intolerance hinder the creative elite massively.  This becomes important as not machines, capital or land are the competitive advantages, but the ability to attract and make productive these creative talents. And tolerance is a most important factor in this – patience combined with trust.

The German magazine „Brand Eins“ is dedicated to exploring these new work realities. For years, they have covered the changing nature of work. “Digital Natives” is one of the names for this rising group – people who grew up in a digital environment and have their expectations set by the web. A statement in a recent issue says: “We want to work not tied to a place, but have room to experiment, have high transparency. We want to know the visions of our colleagues. We want mentors, not bosses”. Trust, purpose and a partner-like relationship with their company is the culture they hope for. “I don’t want to find purpose in a world-tour when I retire, but daily. There is a constant evaluation: does this make sense here? Can I get something out of this job? Why am I doing this? It’s not that I have to work for a non-profit, but I want to know that I am doing good work”.

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