WNSF: The Millennial Generation’s Work/Life Fusion and How It Will Affect Us All

At What’s Now: San Francisco Ting Kelly (daughter of tech guru Kevin Kelly) and Carson Linforth Bowley led a conversation about how members of these collectives thrive together and how Millennials more broadly are changing the balance between work and life. Ting and Carson are Millennials and entrepreneurs who are rooted in The Factory but deeply understand the whole ecosystem, including how it extends beyond San Francisco to other cities and countries with similar scenes. They see this fluid live-work trend as one cultural result of the technological shift that this generation rode into young adulthood. People now can live in the cloud and be completely mobile, connecting with like-minded innovators wherever they happen to be—including all the way out on the Playa at Burning Man. Ting and Carson opened up this topic into a broader conversation with others at the event about how the new work routines Millennials are perfecting will impact the future of work for the broader society.

Each month at What’s Now: San Francisco we explore cutting edge innovation that’s happening in a different field in the region. In January, we looked at innovation happening not in a field, but a scene that most people don’t know about. San Francisco has many examples of physical buildings, often old homes, that provide both work and living spaces for groups of people who are collaborating together and want to fuse these two sides of their lives. These collectives provide the environment for extremely immersive experiences that often accelerate innovation and lead to very productive work sessions, as well as good times. They go by colorful and often enigmatic names like The Factory, or The Embassy, or The Red Vic, and serve a range of purposes. Some of them house serious businesses that work with clients serving a number of top-tier global multinationals. These hives of innovation scattered throughout the Bay Area represent a generational shift in the way we work and live. The people who live and work in these collectives are almost always members of the Millennial Generation, now ages 19 to 36.