Future of Work: Free Piano Lessons


From an article about Salman Khan, founder of the free virtual learning centre and Silicon Valley not-for-profit Khan Academy:

Silicon Valley, he notes, is full of opportunities for the best and brightest to burn their energy on “some hot, new thing”. But, he notes, “that kind of creation can sometimes become an addiction to the point that you are not necessarily filling your soul properly. I have personally wondered, considering the amount of resources here, why there isn’t as much as you would expect devoted to the arts, and to things that you would normally expect out of a society that has an incredible amount of wealth … more rose bushes on the street and art installations and more museums …”Perhaps the absence of these life-enhancing priorities is tied to the loss of an element of play among adults, which Khan believes is particularly discouraged in the workplace. He has plans for the new offices that include a Lego room, recording studio, child-to-adult toys, a photography studio and musical instruments. Children will be welcomed at after-hours events and there will be on-site childcare. “You can work at any kind of intense company and there is an acceptance that you can go to the gym, but not take piano lessons,” he says. “We are not only going to pay for you to take piano lessons, but also carve out a space where you can come and get piano lessons, and practise and improve in all these other dimensions.”

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