A nice post by Harold on industrial structures versus knowledge economy. He sums up nicely the way I feel about being self-employed:
Many of my clients in traditional and hierarchical organisations are so busy with meetings, travel, commuting and other non-essential tasks that they don’t have time for their real job, which is probably some form of problem-solving. I’m in a non-traditional job (self-employed) and I have time to read dozens of books every year. I don’t spend time commuting and the only meetings I attend are focused on some deliverable. I have off-loaded some non-core tasks, such as accounting, and I have access to more cheap and free productivity tools than I can ever use. My work model is more effective and efficient for the knowledge economy than the industrial structures of most of my clients.
Business performance in a knowledge economy requires learning – all the time. Informal learning practices will have to be integrated into all of our work structures. Things like annotating, filing, reflecting, discussing and testing will be part of everyday work. If you need to be a creative problem-solver (what else is a knowledge worker?) then you’ll have to do the same.
(Sorry, dear reader, for sticking you with another quote-and-link post. I’m a bit busy right now, and it is summer here.)