Back in the industrial era when the quantities of work could be measured in prescribed units of time, we felt confident we could time-study and predict what anyone could get done spending 8 hours at their desk, machine or work station. These expectations were taken even more seriously when organizations removed choice and communication from employees through the hierarchies of standardized systems, structures, roles and rules. Well, work has changed. People have more access to information and connections than ever. Work requires more choice and communication than ever. The variation of people's strengths has significant impacts on the velocity of work. Technology makes remote and virtual work more possible in ways no one can imagine or predict. Workplaces committed to retaining talent are flexing every dimension of work to achieve the intention.
All this adds up to the now meaningless metric of the 8-hour single-location work day. More workplaces are holding people accountable for specific outcomes not prescribed hours and locations. The new currency is trust. Accountability is no longer measured by the iron fists of bosses but by the social intelligence of trust. The organizations that leverage the new workplace realities and opportunities will be those that learn quickly how to create sustainable cultures of trust.