At last! My book is in the competent hands of a skilled copy writer and we are nearing the end of a two-year adventure. I should say we are nearing the beginning of a new adventure that starts in April 2021, the official publication date.
I say we deliberately, because many people around the world have been instrumental in helping me over the last 24 months: the Advisory Board, the interviewees, 300 research participants and many others including academics, specialized experts and practitioners.
The title refers to a “bold new breed of employee“. These are the people who work with a gig mindset. They are salaried, work full-time inside organizations, and have behaviors much like independent freelancers. They act in the following ways:
- Question the status quo without being asked
- Are autonomous and don’t wait for approvals
- Take initiatives without asking permission
- Cross organizational borders to build new relationships
- Detect and work with issues others do not see
- Improvise when faced with a critical, unplanned-for crisis
We can call this “civil disobedience” because they go against the established hierarchically-approved methods and at the same time demonstrate new behaviors that are very much in the interest of the organization. I have used the phrase “a bold new breed” because many managers perceive this behavior as deviant and it takes courage to go against this reaction. In reality it is positive deviance and very much needed in most organizations.
The gig mindset helps build resilience in organizations. One chapter in the book entitled “Opening Minds and Organizations” goes into detail with examples of how to stimulate and cultivate a gig-mindset work culture in order to increase resilience, which we all need more than ever in our current volatile times. Of course, it is essential to get the right balance between traditional and gig-mindset ways of working, and this is covered in a later chapter “Defining a Perpetual Balance” where we go into detail about a method for navigating the gig and traditional polarities, a method described here.
The Gig Mindset Advantage started with a wakeup call I had after advising large organizations on their internal digital strategies for 20 years. The book is the result of my response to reactions of many people when I talked to them about the gig mindset inside organizations. The book is grounded in research and inspired by interviews of people on the frontlines of where the action is. I have a special section in the book where I thank you all for bringing me the reality of life in the workplace today.