Wednesday, 3 May 2017

Recess for workers?

My Knowledge and Innovation Network colleague Steve Dale recently highlighted an excellent article by Greg Satell entitled We need to educate kids for the future, not the past. Here's how...'

The importance of 'recess' (or break time) during the day is as important at work as at school. We are seeing the same erosion of time to socialise with work colleagues as teachers who have to cram timetables to 'get through' the curriculum (my daughter is a teacher). At work, this results in missing opportunities to co-develop ideas, widen personal networks and build relationships. The designers and architects of new-build offices do recognise the importance of social workspace, but this is often not reflected in our work-day calendar. I recall talking to a very senior individual at BP some years ago, who scheduled his entire Friday morning every week, just to informally go and talk to people. Unfortunately few of us can get our PA to ensure our diaries are kept clear like that.

When planning KIN events, especially our quarterly workshops, we carefully design-in the social aspects. The dinner the evening before (a bbq in the summer), an open bar, a fun activity designed to get people connected and an informal, relaxing environment. The significant break times scheduled during the day for networking are inviolate.

Greg's ideas for changing the school system make so much sense. I fear that, like the difficulty of clearing our work diaries to add a 'recess', the demands of educational testing and teaching to outmoded curricula, will meet much resistance.

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