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FEI: Front End of Innovation

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June 10-12, 2024
Omni Boston Hotel at the SeaportBoston
June 10-12, 2024
Omni Boston Hotel at the Seaport,
Boston

20th Anniversary Interview Series

WorkLife Multiverse

Seth Adler w/Leslie Shannon

Leslie Shannon discusses how her metaverse research can be applied to solve for the future of work.. According to Leslie, a wholly collaborative platform is no longer a distant concept, it is quickly becoming a concrete reality. The proposal of the metaverse had been around for quite some time, however after recent departures of major media organizaitons from chasing the metaverse from a consumer commercial point of view,, the concept of a WorkLife Multiverse is gaining traction.

The Corporate Dilemma

The COVID-19 pandemic created major disruptions to work life. Businesses were forced to shut down. For months people were stuck behind closed doors with businesses unable to operate as normal. It came with no warning and had a significant impact on business processes worldwide.

Businesses experienced disruptions to their supply chain. Factories were forced to close and work against restrictions on importations and exportations. Businesses were forced to close down as a result of government-mandated lockdowns and restrictions on non-essential businesses. Small businesses suffered greatly because of their lack of financial resources to sustain themselves.

The pandemic created changes in consumer behavior. People relied heavily on digital services, avoiding in-person contact as much as possible. Many businesses opted to shift to remote work to maintain operations while keeping employees safe. This shift led to an increase in the use of technology for communication and collaboration.

See Leslie at FEI. Register Now.

Health and safety protocols made it challenging for businesses to get back to work even after the rollout of the vaccines. Businesses had to implement measures such as social distancing and the use of personal protective equipment. These measures made it difficult for businesses to operate normally. Many businesses opted to implement hybrid work which allowed more flexibility.

While hybrid work offered many benefits, there were still challenges presented:

  1. Hybrid work requires that every employee has access to the necessary technology as well as reliable and secure internet connectivity
  2. Effective communication and collaboration are vital to hybrid working environments.
  3. Managers need to ensure that employees working remotely are productive. This can be challenging because employees may feel isolated or disconnected from their teams.
  4. Maintaining company culture can be challenging when employees aren’t physically in the office. There needs to be a strong sense of community and connection among employees.

Leslie posed the following question –“How do we get people to feel that same freedom that they felt during COVID and yet still have that sense of belonging to a team?”

The Corporate WorkLife Multiverse

The COVID-19 outbreak created major problems for businesses worldwide. However, it highlighted the need for more digital services.

In Leslie’s interview, she introduces the term ‘corporate metaverse.’ This term refers to using virtual reality technology for business purposes. This term has become popular over the past few years as businesses have begun to explore the prospect of using the metaverse for collaboration, training, and various other business activities.

The corporate WorkLife Multiverse solves challenges related to working remotely. According to Leslie, these challenges include ‘wrestling with remote work,’ bringing back the feeling of being in a team, and ‘getting the feeling of being with my teammates.’ These challenges are solved through the corporate metaverse… Leslie says that the corporate metaverse solves the issue of having employees feel like they are part of a team AND having the same ‘work’ freedom they felt throughout the pandemic. The corporate WorkLife Multiverse allows people to meet with colleagues who could be all over the world. The WorkLife Multiverse could completely revolutionize the way we interact with each other. Leslie’s research on the metaverse has valuable insights into the potential of the emerging technology. She believes that there are endless possibilities.

See Leslie at FEI. Register Now.