Humans Are Not Robots: Why We All Need Work Flexibility and What Company Leaders Can Do about It

Humans Are Not Robots: Why We All Need Work Flexibility and What Company Leaders Can Do about It

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A hopeful vision of the post-covid-19 world of work and society, with practical guidance for how to get there.

In this entertaining, thought-provoking, and comprehensive guidebook on work flexibility, Robert Hawkins builds on new and old management theories, case studies, interviews, and his own personal journey from rigidity to flexibility to show leaders how to free hundreds, thousands, millions of people from a way of working that doesn't meet expectations for modern life. Humans Are Not Robots provides theory and evidence to show the urgent need for flexibility for all and then offers practical guidance on rolling out sustainable and successful (and profitable) flexibility campaigns.

Hawkins explores various types of flexibility, including remote work, flexitime, compressed workweeks, and job sharing, as well as those not commonly discussed (reduced hours with full pay, return-to-work internships, flexibility in manufacturing, healthcare, construction). He delves into the science of human needs theory to demonstrate how the traditional nine-to-five workplace creates unsustainable lives and shows that, with even small changes, leaders in any industry can use flexibility to:
  • Make work a vital and fun part of life again
  • Boost productivity, engagement, and innovation
  • Reduce gender inequality and domestic violence
  • Delay retirement of workers and mitigate the issues of an ageing population
  • Fight obesity and reduce the burden of poor health on individuals and health systems
  • Ensure that people maintain needed skills and relevance in the face of increased automation and uncertainty
  • Impact climate change
  • and do all of this while increasing profits.
Part philosophical and scientific journey, part how-to guide, Humans are Not Robots provides readers a deep-dive into the world of work flexibility to learn how to fully unlock its power. Essential reading for leaders of any organization, the book presents a stark and beautiful vision of what people's lives could be, and the idea that this can be achieved right now.

Author: Robert Hawkins
Publisher: Maven House Press
Published: 11/10/2020
Pages: 318
Binding Type: Hardcover
Weight: 1.30lbs
Size: 9.20h x 6.10w x 1.00d
ISBN: 9781947540040

Review Citation(s):
Publishers Weekly 09/21/2020
Foreword 10/26/2020

About the Author
Robert Hawkins is a partner in the consultancy The FlexAgility Group, recently working with the Australian Department of Defence and Optometry Australia. Robert views flexibility not as a "nice to have" but an essential right that enables people to live sustainability. He has written on flexibility for FlexJobs,, and 1 Million for Work Flexibility and is an ambassador and lead contributor for Flexible Working Day, an international day to celebrate and showcase the benefits of flexible work for both people and organizations. He chaired and presented at The Flexible and Agile Work Summit in Sydney in 2019. He holds a B.Eng., Chemical Engineering, from the University of Adelaide.