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Workplace Trends

Technology, comfy couches strive to improve work production

If your New Year’s resolution includes getting a promotion at work, study this list of workplace trends for the year. They will help you demonstrate your superior skills even while allowing you to work with increased flexibility and ever-more confidence.

Start with the basics. You know your way around a keyboard, you can produce a fairly detailed Excel document from a database, your phone is loaded with apps that keep you connected, and you can access Drinking Divas on any remote screen.

In short, you’re tech savvy.

If you want to keep up with 2019, prepare to get savvier.


Email is like your fax

We’re not saying that email will disappear tomorrow, but it is being shoved aside by apps that allow you to communicate with a team on multiple levels, and all at once. There is less need to email when you can instead load a document to a gated site, edit it, watch as others add their changes, and then discuss it via keyboard or camera to come to a final decision.

You can find dozens – perhaps hundreds – of cloud-based systems that help teams manage and communicate. Many of them are aimed at start-ups that employ lots of freelancers, but location-based, brick-and-mortar companies will utilize these tools as well. If you haven’t worked in one of the programs below, or something like them, you will soon.

Wrike is a collaboration platform that allows you to compile a list of tasks. Everyone in the group can view the list, which can be organized by the date it was added, due date or the day and time it was modified.

Slack is a chat app through which you can create team-wide messages or private notes to individuals.

Basecamp is an easy project management tool that helps you track projects and lists, send photos and videos, and host written multi-person chats.

Once you become comfortable using many different types of tools, don’t get complacent. After all, Yammer was all the rage only a few years ago.

Work where you are

Some surveys say that up to half of U.S. employees spend at least some time doing their work in remote locations outside the office. This can improve your flexibility but also increase isolation.

It turns out that working solely out of your house isn’t the best thing for your own outlook. We like talking to people, even if some of them are annoying. For business, communication equates to profit.

As worries grew about declining face-to-face opportunities, coworking spaces were born. Today, nearly every city large and small offers an office-like environment (but nicer) where you can take a meeting, spend a few quiet hours thinking and writing, and network over a cup of fresh coffee.

Many of the newest ones are for women only.

You have to work in a large city to enjoy “No Man’s Land,” as the coworking franchise called The Wing describes their office spaces in New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles. Hera Hub in Washington, D.C., advertises itself as a spa-like coworking space and business accelerator that also offers educational programing and mentoring.

If you live in the suburbs, you will probably have to share coworking space with men, but these places tend to be genteel and comfortable with high-powered wi-fi, nice furniture and other amenities.

Women as entrepreneurs

Starting a business, either full-time or as a side gig, is exciting and scary all at once. And modern inventions make it more possible than ever before. The Internet, of course, has expanded your customer base: you can serve customers in London without ever leaving your home.

The latest State of Women-Owned Businesses report, commissioned by American Express, found that women owned 12.3 million businesses in 2018, or 40 percent of the total. The report also estimates that women are starting about 1,821 new U.S. businesses per day, a significant uptick from an average of 952 between 2012 and 2017. The overall number of women-owned businesses have surged 3,000 percent since 1972.

“This new data demonstrates not only the remarkable impact women entrepreneurs have on our economy when it comes to creating jobs and generating revenue, but also the growing role of women-owned businesses in our communities,” said Julie Tomich, SVP of American Express Global Commercial Services. “Over the past 11 years, we’ve seen women’s entrepreneurship and economic impact increase – especially among the growing number of women-owned companies that generate more than $1 million in revenue.”


Are you ready for your future? Whether you stay in your current job, take on new responsibilities with your employer or strike out for something new, examine the latest innovations and take advantage of them to help you succeed.