– brand eins Special Issue Korea –
South Korea wants to abolish the commute.
On a revolution from above.
Once Hong-Jin Kim saw the tv images of the floods in Seoul, he knew that something was not right with his home country. Or, to be more exact, with the work ethics of its inhabitants. While the South Korean capital was suffering from floods with water levels being waist-high and streets could be navigated by boat only, when more than 100 cars were washed away and 32 people lost their lives, Koreans did not, as one might have assumed, stay at home. Instead, they fought their way through the waters, ruined suits and skirts in the process only to make sure not to miss a single day of work. “We are working too much,” said Kim, “and we are working in a wrong way.”
This manager has seen a lot of the world. Having worked for British Telecom for many years, he now works as Senior Executive Vice President of Office of Service Transformation and Optimization, an impressive title by any measure, at his home country’s counterpart, Korean telecom (KT). As such, his work includes making sure that both high-tech equipment and modern working methods will be established. So that no one wades through the floods just because they think they are indispensable at work. And to ensure that technology is used to keep people from working more and instead helps them work in smarter ways. In Korea, the fashionable term “Smart Working” has been newly coined to describe this phenomenon and Kim attended a conference to increase the popularity of the subject.
Read more … [in German only]
Courtesy of business magazine brand eins, media partner of MCBW 2017
Published in 3/2012 issue, Focus: Importance
Author: Markus Albers
Lives and works in Berlin. This author and entrepreneur is a co-founder and managing director of the agency “Rethink” as well as co-founder of the expert network “Neuwork”. To date, his articles have been published by titles such as Monocle, Die Zeit, SZ-Magazin and Welt am Sonntag. Books: “Meconomy”, “Rethinking Luxury” and his bestselling books on economics, “Tomorrow, I will come in late”. In addition to talks on the subjects of his books, he holds lectures, hosts panel discussions and workshops.