radical Insights.

Weekly Research and Commentary on the Future of Business and Technology.

The Flexible Work Conundrum.

Nov 15, 2022

Dear Friend,

Another day (hour?), another Twitter revelation. If it wouldn’t for the fact that Twitter is a somewhat important form of public discourse and that this affects real people in very real ways, watching the ‘fail whale’ that is Elon Musk’s baby now would be hilarious. Without a doubt, case studies will be written about this.

Read to the end to discover a non-existing ancient civilization.

Decode. Disrupt. Transform.

The stark increase in demand for flexible work should not be surprising to anyone anymore. But that increase seems to have slowed amidst the constant debate of back to the office mandates and new models for flexible and more remote work. What might therefore come as a surprise is that the projected increase in ‘flexible’ work is by no means expected to slow down. However, be it in different forms. If you, as an employer, cannot provide the desired opportunities for flexibility, your talent will create that flexibility elsewhere. By 2027 86.5 million people are expected to be freelancing in the United States (Statista). A number that defines half of the complete workforce and means everyone will be affected by a development bringing radically new challenges. Such a significant presence of freelancing talent means that companies inevitably will have to establish new ways of successfully tapping into that talent pool.

This means they need to find ways a more sporadic and less deeply aligned work relationship can lead to at least their standard. Company identity, values, expectations — a company’s implicit knowledge becomes much rarer when relying on such vast numbers of freelancers. So how can companies navigate the utilization of the freelancers’ explicit knowledge but do so effectively by aligning it with their teams’ tacit knowledge? (Discourse on knowledge management) Will freelancers be aligned with the team, or will we need to find new ways to directly ‘onboard’ input? And how ready would you be for 2027? Would you be able to confidently align someone else’s input with your company’s tacit knowledge? And would you be able to systemize that process? We’ll follow up in 2027! (via Julian)

What We Are Reading

📓 Research Roundup: How Technology Is Transforming Work Great research roundup from several recent studies that explore the nuanced ways technology influences today’s workplace and workforce — including its undeniable benefits and substantial risks. JaneRead

🏦 What the Hell Happened to FTX? “Risky business practices & conflicts of interest” left FTX exposed and on the brink of implosion. What good can come out of this? Binance CEO, CZ, says that all exchanges should provide transparent “proof of reserves”—in other words, clearly demonstrate they have enough cash on hand to fund customer withdrawals. MafeRead

👩‍💻 Why Developers Are Building So Many Side Projects For developers, building an expanding portfolio of side projects isn’t simply a means of working towards a new role; it’s now a strategy for turbocharging creativity and increasing the odds of landing on a lucrative idea. JeffreyRead

⚰️ The Age of Social Media Is Ending Isn’t it refreshing and exciting to consider a new alternative to social networks? One that’s driven by true benefit? JulianRead

🕵️‍♂️ Hackers are using a years-old Microsoft vulnerability to attack governments around the world Microsoft’s Share Point system has a flaw that is becoming one of the biggest digital vulnerabilities in years. It is so big that the U.S. government’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency included it in its list of the Top 10 Most Exploited Vulnerabilities by hackers between 2016 and 2019. If you use Share Point in your company, read this! PedroRead

📲 TikTok’s Greatest Asset Isn’t Its Algorithm—It’s Your Phone We often refer to TikTok’s power of its users as the might of their algorithm — arguably, it is much bigger than that and goes all the way to the very device the software runs on. PascalRead

The Thin Wisps of Tomorrow

💡 Keep ’em coming: Why your first ideas aren’t always the best.

🎨 Find all the tools you need for AI art in this handy compilation.

🧑‍🎨 In case you are looking for a fun self-portrait, check out DrawAnyone.

👾 AI and the future of pixel art.

💩 Is Web3 bull$#!%?

📹 TikTok’s Stratospheric Rise: An Oral History.

👬 Absolutely incredible use of deep fake tech.

Internet Finds

Fifty years ago, an artist convincingly exhibited a fake Iron Age civilization – with invented maps, music, and artifacts. 📜

In Case You Missed It

🏴‍☠️ The Heretic: Why Big Corp Won’t Hurt You

🧨 Disrupt Disruption: In our latest episode, we chat with Barak Berkowitz, former Director Operations and Strategy Director at MIT Media Lab (and a long, storied career in Silicon Valley). It is a fascinating conversation about all things innovation and disruption. Listen here.

Radically yours, take good care, friend!

— Pascal, Mafe, Pedro, Vivian, and the three Js (Jane, Jeffrey, and Julian)