Friday, June 12, 2020

Work’s Going Forward (not back!) to Work – Weekend Musings



Read a great article by Janice Turner in The Times on Saturday – some key out-takes from her, and some random thoughts of mine – over to you to consider.

·       60% of office workers would like to work more from home.
·       I’ve been working from my various home offices in the US, UK and New Zealand for four years now and have never been happier.
·       Facebook and Twitter have told staff they can continue to work from home from now on.
·       Who misses the endless commutes, the Summer days spent indoors, the lack of any decent food all day, the special, constricting ‘business’ attire, and being surrounded by a bunch of near strangers?
·       And as for all those pseudo-trendy, new-age tech company offices with their free snacks, soft-drinks, sleep pods and on-site concierge services – all designed to make you spend even more time there every day – beanbags, table-tennis and pool tables – included.  Who cares?
·       Company HQ’s will disappear – into the Cloud and back to smaller local offices – in lifestyle, local spots, surrounded by people like you, by Family and by Friends.
·       Real prestige/status will not be a corner office; it will be your own screen in your own home office with universal on-line access / high speed internet.
·       It’s the realisation that big problems, big ideas, and big revelations come when you’re happy, cycling, gardening, exercising your five senses, focusing on magic moments – instead of in corporate meetings, over-rated brainstorming sessions surrounded by interruptions/distractions and other peoples’ annoying behaviours.
·       Offices began as centralised paper palaces full of files / records / information / data / ledgers.  Nonsense in our digital world.
·       For us older folk, this is Utopia.  We don’t need supervision, team building and interference.  We will Revive and Thrive at home, free at last – free to transform, innovate, think and create.
·       Younger people are keen to return to office life – they don’t have gardens / home offices, and Zooming from the bedroom / kitchen as your flatmate fights for the space is far from ideal.  And they need guidance, mentoring, social interaction.  They yearn for fun, swapping ideas, going out for drinks after work, and networking.
So maybe it’s a hybrid – 3/2 or 2/3 days in the office/home?
·       It’s important to carry what we’ve learned from remote working to the new ‘abnormal’ or the new ‘not-so’ normal that awaits.
·       Whatever happens, we must not ‘go back to work’.  We must go forward to work.

KR