Thursday, December 12, 2019

How Work Experience for Many is a Dumpster Fire and Why it’s Time for Something Completely Different

Transcript of a discussion on the future of work and the new ways of exploiting what technology does best to deliver intelligent workspaces that prioritize and personalize tasks.

Listen to the podcast. Find it on iTunes. Download the transcript. Sponsor: Citrix.

Dana Gardner: Hi, this is Dana Gardner, Principal Analyst at Interarbor Solutions, and you’re listening to BriefingsDirect.

Worker productivity gains -- despite 30 years of computing technology roll outs -- remain hard to define by economists. Ask a worker, however, and you are increasingly likely to get a hard, cold assessment.

A huge amount of time these days, they say, is wasted on the inefficiencies of technology run amok. Only a sliver of time is going to the creative and innovative types of work that employees crave -- and employers gain the most value from.

Stay with us now as we explore the future of work and the new ways of exploiting what technology does best to deliver intelligent workspaces that prioritize and personalize tasks.

To learn how the newest digital work strategies help unburden those saddled with deflating productivity, please join me in welcoming Fouad ElNaggar, Vice President of Future of Work Products at Citrix. Welcome, Fouad.

ElNaggar: Hey, Dana. Thanks for having me.

Gardner: Fouad, why, when we walk through the front door of our office buildings are we being teleported back 20 years?

ElNaggar: Well, it’s kind of crazy when you think about it. Every one of us has this nice black rectangle that sits in our pocket, and when you think about what that rectangle enables us to do, it’s crazy.

In the world we live in today, I can push a button and a car shows up and takes me wherever I want to go. I can swipe right and I am on a date. I am old. I remember when you had to go up and talk to people at a bar or restaurant or at a concert and do this big dance to get them to go out with you for a meal. Now I am swiping right.

Life is great; work is a grind

When I started working, I used to memorize five different routes to work. I would get together with my friends and we would share secret shortcuts on how to save two or three minutes off of our commute. Now I hit a button on Waze, type in my address, and I am getting to work and back home in the fastest way possible.

I can push a button on my phone and a pint of ice cream comes to my house so I can eat away the disappointment of another Philadelphia Eagles loss. This is magical. The world that we are living in today is magical.

If I had to explain this to a young Fouad in the mid-1990s and say, “Imagine this. Imagine this world.” … When I started working, I remember showing up to my office the first day and laughing at people still using typewriters, okay?

The world we live in today is so insane and amazing. But then you walk into the front door of your office, guess what? That Fouad from the mid-1990s, starting out in New York, would 100 percent recognize that office: Bad guest Wi-Fi; signing in on a clipboard where people are writing Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck; plugging a laptop into one of those light bulb and fan projectors that’s got a VGA adapter on the end of it, and working on some horrible, crappy laptop that takes two minutes to open a big Excel file. It’s crazy. It’s crazy.

The Fouad from 20 years ago could not have imagined the consumer world we are living in today, but he was actually working in the same work world we are in today. It’s amazing, every one of as a consumer has these amazing experiences with our devices. But then you walk through the front door of work and it’s like taking a wormhole back to the 1990s. It’s insane.

Gardner: It’s like we took what used to be client-server business applications, put a web interface on them, and gave up. Not much has happened since then.

So what’s the solution? How do we move from this inertia of workplace innovation? Do we just keep adding on more old stuff, or do we reinvent?

ElNaggar: You bring up an incredible point. I live in Silicon Valley, so it’s probably the worst year -- where people are bringing out medieval bugles and blowing the horns to celebrate the wonderful world of software as a service (SaaS) software. And the crazy thing is, they think that because they took Siebel Systems and put it into a web browser and called it Salesforce, and they took PeopleSoft and put it into a web browser and called it Workday, that they are somehow dramatically changing how work happens.

When you actually look at those systems side by side, it’s the same tabs, menus, and workflows. Salesforce is celebrating their 20th anniversary this year, and literally nothing has changed. The way you use those systems is the same way you used those systems in the 1990s. Like you said, they just took client-server apps but put them on the web.

It’s sad when you think about it, because for the first 30 years of enterprise software -- the investments that went into digitizing the back office, of giving people personal computers, connecting those computers to the Internet so we had email and could communicate with people in our companies or around the world any time of the day -- those investments changed the way we worked.

Those investments drove huge changes in the employee experience, in employee engagement, and in employee productivity. You could do so much more. We were doubling individual productivity every 20 years. Think about that. It used to take two Fouads to do what one Fouad can do today.

And so we had all of this incredible investment and innovation -- and then all of a sudden we hit a roadblock. Look at the last 15 years of enterprise software, and what’s really changed? Again, it was taking a client-server system and putting it into a browser, and then taking some crappy, over-bloated implementation of those same systems to a mobile device that nobody wants to use. That’s not really innovation, right? That’s not changing how we work.

And so when I think about the future of work, I think we are going to have to attack that fundamental problem -- our processes and workflows haven’t really changed. That’s where you have to start.

Gardner: What’s changed for me is instead of spending just two hours a day on email, I am spending five hours a day on texts, chat, Slack, Teams, and email. But I don’t seem to be getting anything more for it. Am I unusual?

Interruptions disrupt productivity 

ElNaggar: That’s exactly right. Collaboration is a big part of work. When you think about the whole premise of a corporation, and about why corporations were even formed, the idea was that if we put specialists in different functions together as a group we could achieve more than we could as individuals.

Yes, collaboration is important, but also being able to deliver on your special skill is important. And as we keep layering on more “collaboration tools,” we have ended up in a world where there is just a ton of noise.

To your point, it’s … “Great, I have an email notification. Great, I have a Slack notification. Great, I have a Teams notification. Great, my salesperson just texted my phone.”

There was some research that came out earlier this year. We are interrupted 1,100 times a day at work -- 1,100 times. Think about that for a second, it’s insane. How can we even get any work done? To your point, you used to do email for two hours a day. Now, the typical person does about 17 hours of email a week, okay?

And then on top of that, we have all of these other systems and vectors for people to interrupt us, to try and communicate with us, try and collaborate, and a lot of times it’s just noise.

I don’t know if your email inbox looks like mine, but mine is like a dumpster. It’s an unprotected place where people can sit there and buy my email address off of Rainking and Discover , right? Or they can just guess it and try one of those ways to get to me.

And so what does my inbox end up looking like? Well, I have random vendors and people that have my email and are spamming it. I have Groupon in there. I have Nigerian prince scams. My wife maybe auto-fills an email and it goes to my work email instead of my personal email. And in the sea of all that noise and distraction I am expected to get my work done?
I have talked with CIOs at some of the biggest companies in the world and they measure what happens in Slack and Teams -- and it's a bunch noise. It really hurts the employee experience, and it kills employee productivity.

And these chat clients? I have talked with CIOs at some of the biggest companies in the world and they measure what happens in Slack and Teams -- and it’s a bunch of noise. It’s like, “Hey, guys, there is a cake in the kitchen. Hey, guys, here is a funny new animated GIF, here is a meme.”

It’s a bunch of noise. And so we are adding a lot to the noise and distraction levels. What’s been lost in the mix? It really hurts the employee experience, employee engagement, and it really kills employee productivity.

Gardner: Sadly, my solution was to work on Saturdays so that I wouldn’t be interrupted.  I would wait and do all my creative work -- and actually get something done. It allowed me to concentrate on the same subject for more than 20 or 25 minutes. But that’s not good because now I’m working six days a week.

How else do we let workers be creative and exploit what their brains were designed to do? How do we get out of this interruptions rut?

Going through the motions

ElNaggar: It’s a great point. What I will add to it is that you are actually engaged in your work. You love what you do. You want to work on your skills to be successful, so you work on the weekends to get your stuff done.

But what I should frame this whole discussion with is two-thirds to 80 percent of employees are not engaged with their work. They are not emotionally aligned with the mission or goals of the company. Whereas you will sit there and say, “Okay, I have to get my job done. I want to be great at this. I want to be exceptional at this. I am going to sit there and work afterhours and on the weekend to get things done.” A lot of people don’t. They are punching the clock. They are not engaged with work. They are disengaged with work. And that’s a huge problem.

Part of the reason they get disengaged with work, where they hate how they work, is because a lot of these systems we have put in place create friction for them. They increasingly create busy work and the kind of work that they did not sign up to do.

We talked earlier about people being specialists in corporations. Each one of us has a special unique skill, what we put on our résumés, and we put in our LinkedIn profiles.

If you go and look at my LinkedIn, you can check it out, what you are not going to see are any merit badges on there because I often use Concur. You are not going to see any credentials that say, “Fouad is really good at finding information on Tableau.” You are not going to see anything in there that says I am “unbelievable at using the procurement system to make things happen.” None of those things are my core skills. None of those things differentiate me in the marketplace.

But that’s how are people spending their time today. They are spending more than half of their time on what they consider busy work. There is BS stuff like expense reports, performance reports, and finding information across different systems and from meetings that don’t matter to them.
They are doing a bunch of copy-and-paste work. I saw some data about two months ago that says at work on average we copy and paste 134 times a day. I saw this and I said, “That can’t be true, that can’t be true.” And so I started to actually track myself and you know what I discovered? I copy and paste like 180 times a day at work. And that was frightening to me. But you realize these things and it’s like, “Oh my God, how many times am I in one system and I copy a piece of data and put it into an email or I copy something out of an email and put it into a form field on another system?”

All day long we are sitting shuffling information between different systems – even though each of us has a unique, special skill. You know what human beings want to do when they work? They want to develop that skill, to hone their craft, and to get better at what differentiates them, because that’s what’s going to allow them to create more value for their organization. And it also set them up for a promotion, a new job, and to make more money. And these are the things that excite people at work.

Employees prize purpose, potential, and play

There is a lot of research out there around total motivation and what really drives engagement. What they have found is that people want to have a feeling of play at work. They want to feel like they are using their adaptive brains to be creative and solve problems. They want to have a sense of purpose. They want to know why they are at their companies and why are they doing their jobs.

There was some research that came out recently that said more than 70 percent of people don’t know why their jobs even exist. Think about how frightening that is. Like why does my job even exist?

So again, they want some kind of purpose. They want to know the work that they do contributes to their organizations and how.
More than 70 percent of people don't know why their jobs even exist. Think about how frightening that is. Like, why does my job even exist?

And the other thing they want is potential. They want to know that there is a pathway for them to develop their skills. People want to spend their time working on their skills sets and on individual projects in unstructured time.

If that’s a developer, they want to work and have a nice big block of time to code. If you are a writer, you want a big block of time to focus on research and crafting beautiful documents. If it’s a salesperson, they want to spend their time in front of customers evangelizing their vision of the product and evangelizing how they can help the customers achieve their goals.

Every one of us has our skills that we want to work on. Working with a team to achieve something greater -- that’s where people want to spend their time, because that’s where they get a sense of purpose for their work. They get a sense of play in their work because they are being creative and solving problems. They are setting themselves up for reaching their potential, and so to move up the wage pyramid, get a promotion, and get that next job.

Gardner: Well, the good news is those types of creative functions are exactly what artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), and robotic process automation (RPA) can’t do. So it’s good that people want to do that. The problem is there is no one app that allows me to do that. I still have 45 apps that I have to cut and paste from. So how do we bridge this, of going from umpteen apps to having more of what’s a creative and appropriate environment for people to be creative in?

App overload 

ElNaggar: It’s a great question, and it’s the question that we had six-plus years ago when we started my company, Sapho, which Citrix acquired about a year ago. And we were looking at this landscape -- the number of applications -- when I was the chief strategy officer at CBS Interactive. And my co-founder, he was the chief technology and information officer there, and we were looking at our universe as a Fortune 100 company. We looked at the reality of our day-to-day jobs and we said, “Oh my God, we have all these incredible apps installed.”

I think Symantec just released a report saying that the typical enterprise is managing 928 applications. Some of the banks that we work with have 8,000 applications. So there is this incredible set of application programming interfaces (APIs). And by the way, the Symantec report says the number of apps has grown by 60 percent in just the last three years. We are not deprecating these old workloads, we are keeping them, and we are adding more cloud-based point solutions on top of it all.

So clearly work is becoming more complex. The typical person is using 42 apps to do their job, and it’s growing. It’s becoming more complex.

We looked at that. And, to your point, we said, “Well, okay, how do we stop the context switching? How do we stop the copy and paste, and how do we shift time away from busy work and toward value creation?” And what we came upon was this idea that -- because of the evolution of APIs, of ML, and of identity access -- there is an opportunity to build a system of engagement and intelligence that sits horizontally and plugs into all of those systems to create a single, harmonious experience for the end users.

And that was our big “aha” moment and that translated over to Citrix and the Workspace product. The idea is that for 30 years in the enterprise there has been the concept that the front end and the back end of the systems that you buy have to be stuck together.

So, for example, as an enterprise I go and I buy an SAP enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, and I get this incredible backend, it’s amazing. It solves all these problems, like two-phase commit. But guess what? You are stuck with that SAP front end, the best that German engineering can imagine, which of course is not necessarily like a modern user experience.

How to cut through the noise 

And so, for 30 years in the enterprise there was the view that if you have a system, you have to take the good and the bad. And what we came along and said is, “No, no, no. Keep the good, the backend, but let’s also take advantage of the API economy and what we are seeing with that level of integration. Let’s connect into these things, abstract them into their tasks, and then create a harmonious experience, a beautiful engagement layer that allows anybody to do their work from many systems from a single point.”

They can live in Messenger, in email, in the Workspace app -- but there is one chokepoint that delivers your work to you, that delivers you your information. It will help you make better decisions.

Step one, we shift the amount of time you are spending on busy work and non-value-creating work, which today, by the way, is 80 percent-plus of your time. We can we flip the script on that so that people are spending less than 20 percent of their time doing that stuff, and now spending 80 percent-plus of their time creating value, being creative, and using their adaptive minds to solve problems and create value for their organizations. That’s step one in the journey. That’s what we are doing with the Citrix Workspace now.

The next step is actually even cooler. It addresses how to supercharge the worker so they are even better on the value-creating stuff. But those are two steps in a journey that we are helping some very large customers through right now.

Gardner: I understand what you need to do. But why is Citrix the right organization to help do it?

Right time, right place for Citrix 

ElNaggar: It’s a great question, and I have spent a lot of time with customers. I think I have met about 250 customers in 2019, and they ask the same question, “Why Citrix?” They know Citrix and they go, “Oh, yeah, the gold standard in virtualization. That’s what you guys are known for.” And what I tell them is, if you think about it, Citrix has actually always been on the forefront of the future work because we have always sat between the end user and their systems of record.

As we talked about developing a system of engagement and intelligence -- of being that layer that sits between the end user and all very different systems -- guess what? Citrix has been doing that for 30 years. Whether you are talking about multiuser, MetaFrame, WinView, or any of these products that Citrix has rolled out for 30 years; whether it was remote desktop access or virtualization, Citrix has always been the engagement layer between the end user and those backend systems of record.

People know Citrix as the place to go to do their work. And now we are saying, “Guess what? The whole conduct of an application has changed. The whole concept of work has changed. And we are sitting in that beautiful position between the end user and their symptoms already, so why not bring the value that we are talking about to that layer?”

Can we be something more than just a thin client that sits between you so that you can access your desktop remotely? Can we be something more than the same client that sits between you and your virtual apps and virtual desktops?

Those things are still important. People are still going to need to access virtual apps and virtual desktops in a secure way. But, we are sitting there right now, ingrained with these systems already. We are trusted by 99 percent of the Fortune 500 already. Why not use this position to help shepherd businesses through their journey? And it’s always a journey. I laugh when I see people out there selling silver bullets or magical switches where they are going to solve the employee experience with the snap of a finger.

It is journey. We have that engagement layer already to help our customers through that journey of organizing work more effectively. Can we drive people through their work more effectively and automate their work more effectively? We can drive this needed shift and value-creation so that people aren’t spending 85 percent of their time doing busy work and garbage and can start spending 85 percent of the time creating value.

That’s Citrix, and hopefully it makes sense because there are a lot of people really interested in the Workspace. They look at this and say, “Oh, my God, this is the future.” Our employees have already been trained by consumer applications on what they can expect. They want a hub, a place that brings them stuff from all across the Internet to a single location so that they can consume it effectively.

They want AI to disappear into the background of the system and yet still make them better off. I talked earlier about Waze. I don’t think about Waze as consumer AI. I don’t want people to think about Workspace as enterprise AI. Waze just weaves into my natural experiences and makes them better and makes me better. It gives me minutes back in my life. I get somewhere faster.

That’s what we think about with Workspace, of weaving experiences right into the solution so it can empower people, help them focus on creating value, and help them do the work they really want to do.

Gardner: Okay, Fouad, give me the elevator pitch, in three minutes. Tell me what Citrix Workspace is, what it does, and why I should want it.

Workspace works for your work experience 

ElNaggar: Citrix Workspace is an experience-driven platform for work. We have done all of the work to make it easy for people to integrate into all of their different systems of record and unbundle those systems of records into micro flows and micro applications. We have done all the work building the intelligence at the user level so that people can build ML and AI to make work better. We have built the infrastructure to enable micro-automation from the ground up, not from the top down like RPA.

We have done all that so we can again organize, guide, and automate people to work. With the Workspace, when I can go there, it feeds me all of my different tasks and the insights and information I need to make choices. It allows me to work at the edge. I don’t have to log into 50 different apps to get my work done. My work comes to me. That’s the key. Bringing work to the individual, assisting them through their work, guiding them through their work, organizing their work, and reducing the amount of time that you have spent having to find stuff. Then you can spend your time doing stuff. That’s what we are about now. That’s the product that’s gone into general availability in November 2019.

And again, it’s a journey. It’s a journey for every customer because you have to really think about, “Hey, what’s our workflow and process today? How can we make it better? How can we unbundle it?”
That's what we are delivering, a chance for people to unbundle and rethink how work is done, to rethink how workflows are done, and to automate non-value-creating repetitive tasks and busy work to ultimately deliver intelligence augmentation to the end user.

That’s what we are delivering, a chance for people to unbundle and rethink how work is done, to rethink how workflows are done, and to automate non-value-creating repetitive tasks and busy work to ultimately deliver intelligence augmentation to the end user.

It’s a platform for work, a place where people can get their work done quickly so that they are not spending 20 percent of their time finding information or 50 percent of their time filling out testing procedure specification (TPS) reports. We want to minimize all that stuff so you can focus on your special skill, focus on your unique craft, and get better at your job so you can create value for both yourself and your employer.

Gardner: Thanks. If I want to customize my Workspace, but not to the point being an application developer, how do I address customization?

ElNaggar: It’s a great question. Being able to customize without being a developer or investing in a bunch of spaghetti code is something that we spend a lot of time thinking about. When we were at Sapho, and we [were] brought over to Citrix, we spent four-and-a-half years and spent $30 million building an incredible integration hub.

For a person who can at least use a business intelligence (BI) tool to develop a report, so maybe a business analyst, somebody who can build something in Tableau, for example, that level of person; we’ve made it really easy for that type of person. They can, number one, integrate into their systems -- whether that’s a software as a service (SaaS) system, an on-prem, off-the-shelf system, or a homegrown system. Incidentally, that’s where a lot of value is, in these wacky homegrown systems that have been around for 20 years but are still running critical workflows that you want to modernize or enable people to access on different devices and via different channels. We made it really easy to integrate those things, and to build in and inherit any business logic that you have to understand, “Hey, here’s the event that should drive a workflow.”

We made it really easy for people to unbundle the micro flow, build little micro apps, and get them into any of these different channels. We said, “Okay, every time we build an integration we want to make sure that we’ve got a bunch of build-out-of-the-box micro apps that are ready to go.”
These are things we see at lots of different customers. We say, “Here you go, customer. You now have a bunch of things that you can start using on day one. We already know they create value, that they hit use cases that a lot of people have.” But then on top of that we made it really simple with drag-and-drop tooling for people to go in and actually build a custom micro flow and micro app that they need on another system. Because a lot of times these are user-initiated workflows that people want to build easily. We have built the tooling -- and this is a new thing for Citrix -- but we’ve built this awesome tooling that makes it really easy for people to do that.

To build a better interface for engagement intelligence -- that sits horizontally across these systems -- you have to make sure you can get into all of those systems. And every organization is going to have their little skeletons in the closet. They are going to have Workday, or Concur, or Microsoft Power BI, right? Sure, they are also going to have Salesforce, and that’s great.

We make sure we have the stuff ready for them for those. But they are also going to have something gnarly, like BMC Remedy or PeopleSoft, or some homegrown system that’s still running on an AS400. And so you have to be able to empower those customers, too, to build better experiences on top of those things. That’s what we do with the tooling, the integration layer, and event tracking, along with the micro-flow builder and orchestration layers.

All of these things are designed to make it easy to not have to sit there and write code to deliver these things, but to drag and drop components into place and that makes it possible.

Gardner: You mentioned that the latest Citrix Workspace becomes generally available in November, but you also mentioned that there is another shoe to drop around intelligence augmentation. Where does this all go next when it comes to augmenting the worker?

Intelligent augmentation in three steps

ElNaggar: Intelligent augmentation is the guiding North Star for Citrix. We want to have intelligence-assisted workers. I’m sure you have seen the research out there about AI in chess, for example. It was really hard for grandmasters to be AI-driven in chess against things like IBM Watson until they started working in conjunction with AI. Now they can use an average Elo-score chess player to beat a Watson because they are working in parallel with AI -- and that’s the world that we are trying to build.

By abstracting workflows out of these monolithic systems and turning them into simple micro flows and micro apps at the individual level, we are also building datasets around what happens at work. Because we are tied into the systems of record -- it’s not like RPA where we are screen-scraping and guessing at stuff -- we are actually connected into the system. So we can say, “Okay, this event is happening 1,000 times, this action is being taken 1,000 times. Okay, great, let’s hotspot that and get rid of that repetitive task.” That’s step one.

Then step two is saying, “Okay, what are these stacked actions that we see? What are the things that we know every time your vacation is approved, for example? What are the next four things that will usually happen?”

Well, for most people, number one they go to their calendar and they mark the days that they are going to be on personal time off (PTO). Then when they go on PTO, they change their away message to say, “I am on PTO, if you have an emergency, text me at this number.” Maybe a week before PTO, they will email their team and say, “Hey, I’m gone for the next week, if you have anything critical, let me know, so I can do it now.”

Maybe they will go into their Outlook app and create like a VIP escalation rule for an email from a customer so that it also goes to their boss. Now, because we have broken things down to that micro flow, micro app level, we can automate all of that. Once your PTO gets approved, we will do those next four steps on your behalf.

Now we have taken that customary workflow away from you via automation. But there is a next phase of automation that we call system-learned. System-learned says, “Hey, every time Dana gets an expense report under $50, he approves it without even looking at the receipts.” Because, guess what? You are busy, Dana, you want to work on creating great content, you don’t care about the time that you are spending doing expense reports.

So now the system says, “Okay, 50 times out of 50, Dana approves an expense report under $40 without looking at it. Why do I need to send him 50 notifications about expense reports under $40? Let me approve them on his behalf, and here are just the two that look riskiest.”

Now the system has automatically approved 40 expense reports on your behalf, and you get only the two that are potentially risky. Guess what? I have taken 40 notifications and approvals out of your life and made work easier. That’s system-learned.

Now, there is going to be another step, a third tier. Those first two tiers are like using an autopilot. But the next level is what we call co-pilot. These things help you become a better pilot, a better driver. At this point, the augmentation capability notices something across these two systems that you should know about that might be able to help in your decisions.

The system determines, “Oh, I have seen another group that’s worked on a problem like this, and here was the output. Let me serve that up to you in context.” That’s that next level of ML and AI that we have weaved into the Workspace because we have integrated at such a deep, personal level, at the task level, at the atomic unit of work level, so that we can see all of these things going back and forth. We can then build some really cool algorithms across a truly unique dataset.

If you think about it, nobody in the world has the dataset that we have. It’s a horizontal, cross-system-of-record view of what’s happening in an organization yet tied to an individual. That’s really cool and gives a lot of flexibility to shoot for the moon on what’s possible with new types of work.

Gardner: We are just about out of time, but how should businesses and individual workers prepare themselves for the future of work that you just described?

From book value to people value

ElNaggar: Number one, as an organization, you need to be committed to delivering an incredible employee experience.

For 100 years companies have been valued based on book value. They took the value of all the property, plants, and equipment – from photo copiers to the company jet -- and said, “Okay, that’s the replacement cost of your organization. Let me multiply it by five or six, and that’s what your company is worth.”

If you look at the S&P 500 in 1975, 80 percent of the market cap was tied to such tangible book values. But the world now is more about intangible values. It’s about human equity. The people who work for you are worth a huge value within your organization.

In the S&P today, for example, 80 percent of the market cap is now not based on physical assets, but people and the intangible assets. It’s about the knowledge that’s in the brains of people that work for us.

If you are an organization thinking about the future, it’s time to correctly value the people. I often hear people saying, “Oh, people are most valuable assets.” But I still don’t see a lot of these organizations actually treating people as assets, treating them as their most valuable assets.

But some organizations are having a cultural switch, where they say, “Shoot, human equity is what matters. I need to figure out how I invest in human equity. I need to figure out not just how to attract the best talent, but how to power that talent to be the best version of themselves -- and then keep them so that they are not turning over after just 22 months like many Millennials do.”
It's more important than ever for people to understand what their skills are, their craft, and get themselves mentally prepared to be adaptive.

That’s what organizations need to do. For individuals, it’s more important than ever for people to understand what their skills are, their craft, and then get themselves mentally prepared to be adaptive. They have to do adaptive problem-solving because that’s a value they can best create. The busy work and the other stuff that eats up 80 percent of people’s time today is going to disappear or be diminished.

Where you are going to shine and demonstrate your value to an organization over time is focused on: Here is my skill, here is my craft, how do I hone it, how do I get better? That’s what the individual needs to be thinking about over the next few years as the future of work becomes more relevant.

Gardner: I’m afraid we’ll have to leave it there. You have been listening to a sponsored BriefingsDirect discussion on new ways of exploiting what technology does best to deliver intelligent workspaces that prioritize and personalize tasks.

And we’ve learned how the newest workspace advances are helping unburden those saddled with deflated worker productivity. So, a big thank you to our guest, Fouad ElNaggar, Vice President of Future of Work Products at Citrix.

Also, a big thank you to our audience for joining this BriefingsDirect intelligent workspaces discussion. I’m Dana Gardner, Principal Analyst at Interarbor Solutions, your host throughout this series of Citrix-sponsored BriefingsDirect discussions.

Thanks again for listening, please pass this along to your business associates, and do come back next time.

Listen to the podcast. Find it on iTunes. Download the transcript. Sponsor: Citrix.

Transcript of a discussion on the future of work and the new ways of exploiting what technology does best to deliver intelligent workspaces that prioritize and personalize tasks. Copyright Interarbor Solutions, LLC, 2005-2019. All rights reserved.

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