A phone? An office? A meeting? Huh?

Ok is it just me or is “working” totally different than it was just 2 years ago.What’s a phone? The fact that my iPhone has a “phone application” amongst all of the other 50 apps probably says it all. But seriously folks, who actually uses a phone anymore. I just mentioned yesterday on UserFriendThinking, a BlogTalkRadio show with the Bizzuka guys, that I rarely use my phone on a typical business day. In fact, I don’t even have a desk phone because the cell phone that I have rarely even gets a call. So how do I communicate then? Emails and lots of them (maybe 200-400 sent and received a day), tweets and DM’s, IM, Yams (on Yammer), text messages and posts/comments. I expect it would take me 10 times the amount of time to do all of this on the phone. Actually, probably closer to 100 times more.


What’s an office? What I’m referring to here is a typical cube or walled office with a door at the place that sends you a paycheck. Firstly, I have neither at my “place of work”. I also don’t typically “go to work” each day either. I work where I happen to be and that can include home, a hotel room, an airport, a restaurant, my car or heck anywhere my iPhone works, on or off WIFI. I create, collaborate, comment, and converse all electronically so really being tethered to a single location makes no sense to me. In fact, I don’t generally even tell people daily where I am physically located anymore (so no more emails to coworkers saying I’m working from home) because I’m just as reachable regardless of where I am. Heck, half a dozen of my iPhone apps share my GPS location anyway so if they really needed to know…

What’s a meeting? I remember 20 years ago, when I started my first job, I spent hour after hour in walled rooms with a table and chairs discussing things and taking notes in “meetings”. And all these appointments started and finished on the hour or half hour and expanded to fill in the time. I swear there were days when I would be in “meetings” all day long and it certainly didn’t feel all that productive. Kinda depressing eh. Today, I still have 1-2 meetings a week but often not in a room with a specified stop and start. In fact, all of my exec colleagues and I at Radian6 share a big open space – we always have. We are in a JIT (just-in-time) meeting environment. Want a meeting? Then ask for attention from the others for a minute or two (which can be difficult with all the distractions at times I admit) and discuss something, decide something, and go back to work implementing it. Even when it comes to customer meetings 99.99% of these are done virtually using Gotomeeting/Readytalk etc..all via the web.

Personally now I can’t imagine doing it any other way.