THURSDAY THOUGHTS! - Myth Busting Working Differently

Posted by | February 09, 2012 | Thursday Thoughts | No Comments

Week 7 is a fairly quick one 🙂  We are living and working in very fast changing times.  Our leaders talk very much about “working differently” and in essence, this is very much required with diminishing resources and an agenda that never appears to get any smaller.  However,

Working differently – is this the great urban myth of our time?

What do you think about “working differently”?  Have you experienced truly different ways of working?  Have you had to champion working differently?  Just how difficult or easy have you found it to change the way you and/or your teams do things and make the new way stick?  In many ways, its the holy grail of nimble professional working, but just how real is it in our day-to-day working lives?

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Sharon Davidson
Organisational development professional specialising in personal, team and whole organisation improvement. Full range of OD tools and techniques available including: Belbin team role analysis; learning style inventories; 360 degree feedback; cultural assessments; personality psychometrics; strategic planning and workshop facilitation. (This list is not exhaustive!)

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  • Sarah Gant says:

    I’m not sure my comments on this subject really count,although you could argue that I am the very definition of new ways of working! For me, “working differently” means what I believe you development types call a “portfolio career” (you see, even here in the French sticks the jargon catches up with you). I have three different careers in my portfolio.

    Around three days a week (including preparation time) I teach English – I’m salaried at the local prison for two afternoons, and I also have a few private clients (one of whom pays me back with a French lesson for Jonathan – how’s that for ‘new ways’!). At the moment, this is my ‘bread and butter’ and I love my prison teaching but I don’t want to expand this wallet in the portfolio.

    I am also developing my own stationery business as an independent Phoenix Trader (see I’ve never had my own business before and this really is fun! The products are really lovely, I get to meet lots of new people, some of whom become friends as well as customers and I get all the enjoyment of seeing my team develop without the large-organisation HR grief (no offence, dear friend :0)). This wallet in the portfolio has huge potential for growth (my sales grew by 40% last year, even though it’s still a small sapling) and I’ll gradually reduce the teaching to devote more time here. (Wanna join my team?)

    Then there’s our new gite business (, which complements the Phoenix business surprisingly well because while my stationery sales peak in October to December in the run-up to Christmas, this will always be a quieter period for holiday rentals (plus there’s a whole load of new people arriving chez nous to transform into customers or even traders).

    I suspect that the number of people managing portfolios in some shape or form will grow for all sorts of reasons. What do you think?

  • Aresko says:

    Lots of variety and newness there Sarah. I’m hearing brightness, feasibility and positive benefits all over the place. Logic comes through in the harmony of your portfolio and all this combined is terrifically yellow through and through.

    Sounds wonderful! You make it sound like a perfect combination for you and a very complementary patchwork quilt of opportunities.

  • Peggy Edwards says:

    Interesting, for an NHS employee I think I have worked differently for years as I have been a remote worker based at home. I have also worked for two different organisations in the week so guess have done a bit of portfolio working as well. Considering my career started in nursing working shifts I do work differently. I found this way of working was great for me and was the most productive I have ever been in a job; however it needs trust between a manager and employee, it also needs balance between remote working and social interaction with others. Isolation can be an issue and doesn’t suit all. Now I work in a traditional office base role working with a defined team supporting ‘projects’. I do miss the blessed isolation and ability to ”get your head down’ and get on with a task, but the advantage of working with a great team out weighs this.

  • Aresko says:

    Lots of variety there Peggy. Also lots of red statements of feeling and instincts.

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