The Third Wave of Virtual Work

Source: Tammy Johns and Lynda Gratton, Harvard Business Review, Vol. 91 nos. 1-2, January-February 2013
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… In studying the dramatic changes that have taken place since the 1980s, we have discerned three major waves in the “virtualization” of knowledge work. They developed for different reasons, and they are all still moving forward. … In this article we describe how each wave came about through a confluence of shifting employee priorities, evolving employer imperatives, and emerging communications and collaboration technologies. With experts projecting that within a few years, more than 1.3 billion people will work virtually—that is, through rich electronic connections from sites of their choosing—it is important to understand the transformation under way. …