A Town Hall Talk on the Future of Work

1Executive Summary

Ten years ago it would have been unimaginable, both technically and culturally, to work from a coffee shop. Today, it’s a reality. The workplace environment is changing fast, and it’s workers driving the change not executive management teams. On the morning of July 28, between 9:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m., we gathered a group of about 75 entrepreneurs, executives and investors at our San Francisco office to discuss “The Future of Work” at the latest GigaOM Bunker Session.

A few speakers lead the day’s discussion, but the overall emphasis of the townhall-style Bunker Session events is on participation and comment by all those invited. This month’s conversation leaders included:

  • Fabio Rosati, CEO of Elance
  • John Hagel, Chairman, Center for the Edge and Author of “The Power of Pull”
  • Vinnie Mirchandani, CEO of Deal Architect Inc. and Author of “The New Polymath”
  • Lukas Biewald, CEO of CrowdFlower
  • Aaron Levie, CEO of Box.net

Part 1*

Part 2*



About This Event

Easy access to broadband, mobile computing and cloud-based software is impacting the way we work and, therefore, the way we think about building companies. It is affecting the way people are employed and how employees think about employers.

New types of virtual and hybrid organizational structures are now possible, and we need new kinds of collaboration technologies to make it all work. These changes also call into question the roles of traditional departments like Operations, Human Resources and IT. What will these departments mean to a workforce for which two years is a long employment stint, or to employees for whom provisioning IT needs on their own credit card is more productive than calling the IT help desk? Do you need 200 people on a task for just three hours? No problem if you have a credit card and a browser.

The changes are profound and happening faster than we think.

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* A note about the video. We had a packed house yesterday for this event, which is awesome, but it also meant that there were many laptops, netbooks and iPhones on our network. We love it when people actively use the technology we write about, but that also meant our video stream was getting crowded out, resulting in choppy video and delays. Our apologies for any inconvenience. We are working hard to ensure that the video experience for the next Bunker will be just as great as being live in the room.

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