This talk offers a reading of time management in the workplace and the role of technology in facilitating dominant ideas of productivity. It begins by revisiting classic moments in management theory – Taylor, Gilbreth, Mayo, Drucker, and more – and develops a framework for understanding contemporary productivity tools in light of these precursors. Rather than simply a metric for efficiency, today productivity is a lifestyle practiced by elite, autonomous workers who manage themselves in transient, adhoc workplaces. Technology is the trusted and reliable companion across multiple domains, contexts and experiences.
Also join us for a discussion with Melissa Greg on Tuesday October 27th at 5pm http://ihr.ucsc.edu/event/melissa-gregg-8-hours-for-what-we-will/
Melissa Gregg Bio:
I am a Principal Engineer at Intel Corporation researching the future of work. My role is to translate strategic insights on the nature of enterprise and employment to business outcomes and opportunities.
My recent research tracks the rise of the personal enterprise – a world in which individuals take responsibility for their life’s work with the assistance of freely available technical infrastructure. ‘Ad hoc professionals’ negotiate a changing landscape of work suppliers to sell their services and make a living outside of traditional employment relationships. This type of career poses a challenge to tech business models that differentiate between enterprise and consumer sales. There is a third category emerging between the two thanks to consumer-led enterprise innovation. My aim is to help workers empower themselves and flourish in this context.
As an Australian-born researcher, I have an international profile in gender and cultural studies, work and organization studies and affect theory. My forthcoming book, Counterproductive, is a history of time management self-help in the workplace. It shows how productivity tools came to prominence as employment shifts contributed to a decline in collective opportunities for structured time and ritual. This adds historical depth to my earlier analyses of contemporary work life which include Work’s Intimacy (Polity 2011), The Affect Theory Reader (co-edited with Gregory J. Seigworth, Duke 2010), and Cultural Studies’ Affective Voices(Palgrave 2006).
Before joining Intel, I was on faculty in the Department of Gender and Cultural Studies at the University of Sydney (2009-13) following a series of research fellowships at the Centre for Critical and Cultural Studies, University of Queensland (2004-8).