A shift in mentality
Over half of managers think working remotely during the pandemic has gone better than expected. The caveat to that is that the answer depends how well or badly those managers thought it was going to work in the first place. If best case scenario was utter chaos, then a marginal drop in productivity will likely be a positive.
Even if companies have seen a slight performance drop, the shift to working from home has benefitted some employees. Michael (pictured right) points to a poll in France that found 71% of people who had never previously worked at home before the pandemic now wished to do so at least once per week. 79% said they would do so even if it meant giving up their office.
“Because French workers have the legal right to ask their employers to work from home, the results of this survey are exceptionally relevant,” he explains.
Being forced into working from home was an experiment that at the start of the pandemic most of us would probably have been skeptical about. But for those who’ve been able to, it has worked.
Because of this, it’s likely that post-pandemic the taboo around requesting to work more frequently from home will have been replaced by confidence that work can be done productively from where employees feel most comfortable. It’s also been a lesson in utilizing the digital technology available for home working.
The office will still be a part of our working lives, we’ll just spend less time physically in it. And it will take work for companies to establish a digital culture that fits the culture in the office, so workers who spend more of their time at home don’t become isolated and still fit in.
The future of work was always heading in this direction. The Covid pandemic has simply accelerated the process, condensing into four short months what would have taken over a decade. That’s a good thing, and it had forced us to grapple with a challenge we were always going to face, as hybrid work becomes the new normal.
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