Are These Workplace Trends on Your 2023 Agenda?

All eyes were on the World Economic Forum at Davos this month, and our team was especially keen to glean insights into the changing workplace. Here’s what we learned:

The workforce is set to increase – Inflation and the cost-of-living crisis mean that large numbers of people are worried about their income. Some countries are already seeing a process of “unretirement” as older people return to the workforce – and they won’t be the only ones.

The four-day week is gaining traction – the pandemic saw us experiment with flexibility of place – and now we’re ready to think about flexibility of time. For families in particular, the pressure of a 5-day working week is increasingly hard to bear – and there is a growing awareness that it doesn’t leave people with sufficient time to care for their needs and responsibilities.

It’s all about autonomy – Autonomy is set to overtake flexibility as the new workplace must-have. Rather than focusing on flexing time and place, autonomy allows employers to take a more inclusive approach by giving employees more choice – and ultimately more control.

The best thing about the office is friends – it turns out, the reason people go back to the office is to see their friends – but don’t expect them to get much done there. Office time is valuable for in-person interaction, with home the preferred location for focused work.

While some of these shifts are already in evidence in many workplaces, others will require a change in approach and mindset. Now is the time for organisations to start planning ways to incorporate autonomy into their ways of working and support those returning to or entering the workforce.

Founder of HSM Advisory, Prof. Lynda Gratton, shares her 2023 workplace trends with the World Economic Forum here and on their Book Club podcast here.