Covid19 has upended the way we work. With non essential workers working from home (WFH), there are mixed opinions on how optimal this setup really is, citing declines in productivity, difficulty in creating culture, and of course the fact that there is expensive office space leased:
Others perceive it to be working very well, and are planning on how to keep remote work going well after the pandemic.
There is one point that a few people have made online, which is that it is very different to be a remote first company doing WFH, than a company that has always worked from offices, to suddenly move to a WFH setup. The employees in this second group will not really get to benefit remote work the way that the employees from the remote-first company will.
Crisis driven WFH is not the same as an intentional remote structure.
Apparently, mid-level managers hate it already, and there are some theories as to why:
Regardless of how well or horribly WFH is going for your company, employee burnout is a very real risk in either scenario.
Laura Giurge and Vanessa Bohns recently wrote:
The lines between work and non-work are blurring in new and unusual ways, and many employees who are working remotely for the first time are likely to struggle to preserve healthy boundaries between their professional and personal lives. […] Afternoons will blend with evenings; weekdays will blend with weekends; and little sense of time off will remain.3 Tips to Avoid WFH Burnout – HBR
The article is excellent, and the main takeaway in one word: boundaries. Create them, enforce them, and don’t compromise.
It’s too early to tell if WFH is here to stay, but the way we think about work will surely never be the same.