Is the future of work remote? It’s more of a hybrid between remote and in person. Though the pandemic is far from over, companies are starting to go back to office and bringing their employees with them. Some are opting for a hybrind approach where some employees work remotely while others are in person at work. But, having experienced working from home, some employees don’t want to go back to the office and are opting to quit their job and work for themselves or find a job where they can keep working from home.
Most companies will lose employees by forcing them to go back to work at the office; it’s happening. Not all jobs can be done remotely; for example service workers. So this is a not a one size fits all approach to work. But knowledge workers can; but even they are quitting their jobs too. Which begs the question: what is stopping these companies from going fully remote?
I think there are a few ideas that are stopping companies from going fully remote:
- The power of productivity when people are actually together;
- People want to connect;
- Trusting employees to do what they say they’re going to do;
- A culture of workaholism;
The power of productivity when people are actually together
I think there’s a general feeling around the idea that people are more productive when they’re together. And though there are studies that back the idea that working from home can make people more productive, I believe it depends on the business and industry your in. Key is to focus that time on things best done collaboratively and face to face: mentoring, professional development and brainstorming.
People want to connect
Some people just want to be around other humans more than others. It’s the human need to connect, above everything else, that drives that desire to see people.
Trusting employees to do what they say they’re going to do
This one is self explanatory, you’ll have a hard time working with someone if you feel they’re not going to keep their promises and follow through.
A culture of workaholism
This is the culture that exists today, where being at work means companies can drive you to work more and more.
It goes with the above point that companies want to control their employee’s time. When you’re on company time, you better be working all out. A few weeks ago I published a post about a report on how people spend their time while working from home, and highlights some interesting results; check it out.
Personally, I’ve been working with people in person and remotely for over 10 years; a hybrid. I’ve worked with people from all generations, and can tell you that remote work isn’t for everyone. I don’t have a preference, I’m used to a hybrid. But there are situations where I want to be remote; which I think is the case for most knowledge workers. For example, I want to be alone when I want to focus deeply on something, that way I can avoid the distractions that come from having people around.
Anyway, what do you think is stopping companies from going fully remote?