The Evolution of the Workplace

I chose to read the chapter “Work” due to my own experience watching my father interact with his colleagues. My dad works as the COO of the Walmart International South Asia region. He travels back and forth from the United States to India once a month. With his hectic schedule, I would expect to see him constantly texting or sending emails. However, after reading this chapter I noticed that he is actually rarely on his work phone. Today, I called him and asked him how he communicates with his colleagues while he is in America. He said that he doesn’t until he has to. He told me that before he leaves, he sets up a meeting with the people he works with and they discuss a plan for the following week. That way, there is face-to-face communication and no information left unsaid or misunderstood. My dad did tell me that the interns and managers who work in the home office prefer to do meetings over video chat or simply email threads to discuss things. He sounded disappointing when saying this to me, and when I asked him why he said that in the workplace, he said that there is no better way to collaborate with the people that you work with than in person communication. In the chapter, the quote “Younger colleagues have grown up thinking that electronic communication is a universal language,” allows me to visualize what my dad is talking about. The individuals who have grown up with cellphones want to rely on them even in the workplace.

Reading this chapter makes me wonder, when I am working one day, will there even need to be office buildings? Will everything be online? It is a scary thought to have. I hope that there will be interpersonal communication in the field I will be working in. I believe the workplace should have technology to further the business itself, but not speed up communication processes.

Being able to relate this chapter to the experiences of my dad is very interesting, and has enabled me to learn more about what he does and how the day to day commitments are fulfilled. It makes me feel proud that there are people out there, including my dad, who continue to encourage interpersonal communication to the younger generation in the workforce.

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