OPI Forum

Top 3 highlights from the OPI European Forum 2017

This June our CEO Simon Drakeford had a pleasure of chairing the OPI’s sixth European Forum in Berlin. The theme of this year’s event revolved around the future of the sector and the disruption happening in the industry right now. Here are the top 3 presentations that were our personal favourite and some key take-aways from each one.

1. Future Work, Jeanette Huber, ZukunftInstitute

Jeanette spoke about the future of work not only for our industry but overall, covering topics such as people, values and work, markets and organisations and digitisation. Here are some interesting points from her presentation:

  • The average life expectancy is 70 and today people aged 45+ feel 8-10 years younger than they actually are. This means that there is a huge amount of active agers who no longer see work as the opposite of leisure time, but the opposite of boredom and social isolation. This means we will see more and more companies create age-friendly and healthy environments.
  • There is more focus on individuals in the work culture. Jobs need to be sculpted to fit lives, not the other way around. Blended workforce on the move and mobile and flexible performance tools will become more important in the workplace as the work environment of the future creates company’s’ identity and makes it perceptible for all employees.
  • Tomorrow we will work in a distributed way in fast, efficient and adaptable teams rather than complex hierarchies that simply do not reflect a new mind-set.
  • Digitisation will keep transforming our lives, automated assistance has to be intelligible, traceable and it has to leave room for choice and alternative action.

2. The switch from push to pull in communication, Andre Alpar, PerformicsAKM3

Andre’s presentation focused on the growing importance of pull marketing strategies here are some key focus areas:

  • The growing popularity of content marketing shows a paradigm shift from push to pull advertising.
  • Invest in high quality content –understand different content types and the role they can play in your digital marketing orchestra.
  • Distribution of your content is vital for the success of a content marketing campaign –It is the number one failing factor of unsuccessful content marketing efforts.

3. The changing work environment and its impact on employee health and well-being, Louise Shipley, Fellowes

The way we work and our working environment is changing. This has a major impact on employee health, well being and ultimately productivity. Here are some interesting points from Louise’s presentation:

  • 6% of European adults are overweight, 23% are obese, 42% never exercise, 30% never engage in basic physical activity, 30% will be over 55 by 2030.
  • The way we work and where we work is changing with longer hours, flexible working, remote working, blurring of work/life balance and increase in sedentary tasks
  • Who we work with is changing: more generations than ever are working together, millennials consider their job an integral part of their lifestyle, Gen Z are digital natives looking for teamwork, play and flexibility.
  • The European worker is becoming increasingly unwell with businesses across Europe losing an estimated €73 billion annually due to employee sickness caused by work-related ailments
  • 77% of employees believe companies with strong health and well-being ethics attract the best staff and there’s a legal and ethical duty to look after the health of employees
  • Workplace of the future needs to address organisational culture and drive health initiatives
  • Incremental changes can have a positive long-term impact on employees’ health, happiness and productivity.

It is clear that there are many changes ahead for businesses across different sectors and geographies. Traditional ways of working are altering the workplace and our lives in the way we never imagined. If we embrace the change and remain forward-thinking and open to new ideas and opportunities, there will be exciting times ahead

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