I've been thinking about the modern workplace and if the modern workplace has really changed as we would be led to believe by the hype.
We often hear about diversity in the workplace but really how diverse is it. I often remember scenes from Pleasantville where like robots men head off to work all in a standard blue or gray suit, carrying a briefcase and wearing a hat. It makes me think of the conformity that was always expected in the workplace.
Sp has it changed, really. Well diversity of employees is definitely a lot more accepted. In a lot of professions there are more women, people with disability and to some degree the workplace is much more accepting of those that may have tattoos, piercings and an alternative style. But is that where it ends? Quite possibly. Most workplaces haven't changed the way they do business. You are still expected to conform, like a zombie with very little room for individuality in delivery of your job.
If you don't believe me, start looking closely at the companies or organisations out there that claim to be employee friendly. An organisation that allows for individuality or flexibility don't do it to improve the quality of life for it's employees or even just to motivate more productivity. What we have learned is that those employers that do that often demand a lot more from their staff and quite often don't give an improvement in quality of life but rather suck any life out of you. In fact if you look at some of those organisations they often have higher rates of divorce because the hours expected are so high. This week we heard about US based Netflix where you may be paid well but can be fired at a moments notice.
Conformity is still expected and more and more (probably due to the invention of social media), your behaviour both in work and in your personal life is to some degree dictated by your employer. After all more than ever employers are introducing clauses that stop you from posting pictures and status updates that your employer disagree with.
The modern workplace is different than what it was in the past but I'm not sure it is any better.