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Location will not matter in the future of work

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Some of you may not know the reason I ended up working for myself as a location independent professional. My previous job was outsourced, a term that we have all become familiar with, and I saw this as an opportunity to do something for myself.

I could have retrained, updated my skill-set and got back on the wheel but I felt I was losing a fighting battle (being at least 10x more expensive than someone in India / China in my industry for instance).

The irony is that I now outsource work myself.

The future of work is thought to be flat, where location is not the key factor but communication is. Competition for your job will be global, but the opportunities will be vast for those who embrace the future.

It’s pretty scary really. What’s stopping someone in Vietnam competing with me for my advertising revenue? If I can go and work in Bali for six months and run everything from there, then why can’t a Balinese compete too?  The web is enabling that.

working online in thailand

It has got me thinking about what can I offer in the future that would be hard to replicate elsewhere. Working online leaves me pretty exposed but I have been thinking more local, where I have the knowledge, contacts and emotional ties. This could be my value add over someone from the Far East.

Much of the work and business today that’s conducted online is not reliant on being local or having local knowledge.

I wonder how many people are only living in London because of work? I moved there for work in the late 90s and at the time work was my only motivation. London of course is a fantastic city to live (if you have money) and many choose to live there simply because its so vibrant and exciting, but how tempting would it be to take your job and salary to a more affordable part of the country or another country altogether?

The future of work might well be that location is not longer a factor*. If that’s the case then will businesses still locate to expensive cities with expensive work forces?

There is a little video linked at the end and its worth watching for the 6 minutes as it is pretty thought provoking.

* Of course some jobs, such as those that involve physical work will always be local.

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