‘Working from Home for the foreseeable future!’
When most of us were told these words it was quite a surreal, incomprehensible position we were in. Over the following days and weeks, we have all been on a rollercoaster of emotions, from denial, fear, anxiety and for a few a glimmer of joy that they don’t have to suffer their commute.
So what are the implications of Working from Home? For me, (Natalie) these are my thoughts.
I like human interaction and enjoy going to my workplace in Clerkenwell, So the whole WFH doesn’t particularly inspire me, however, today I am writing this laying on a sun lounger in the garden with my laptop perched on the armrest, coffee nestled on a weed – which evidently is a rather good coaster, whilst wearing non-standard business attire, enjoying the heat of the 11 am sunshine, listening to the bird song and feeling very relaxed indeed. I even squeezed more work this morning so that I can enjoy an early afternoon bike ride and some even more me-time.
Chris also shared how he was able to eat pancakes with his family and celebrate his youngest daughter’s Birthday, all before jumping on his laptop to cover off some work chores all at his own pace with no worries of the commute, or shaving. So, here, I believe is THE GOOD.
So what’s BAD about WFH? when the above sounds so dreamy. Well, yesterday the weather wasn’t great – my flat was cold and although I went for an early morning run (another tick for THE GOOD) I came home showered and got back in my ‘comfy’s’ as I had zero inspiration to get motivated. We could probably list a few bad points quite quickly.. Especially if you don’t have outdoor space or your wifi connection is slow, the technology you have at home isn’t up to the job, You don’t have space for a home office – nor do you want to sit in the kitchen hunched over a laptop whilst your other half runs the vacuum cleaner around your feet, or the kids are screaming for your attention -All resulting in a lack of productivity, which in the end doesn’t justify saving that commute time.
The truth, I guess, is that in this country we enjoy our freedom. Freedom to choose, freedom to do, freedom to be, freedom to love, freedom to hate, freedom to go, and make of the day what we want, in our way. We’re not used to having shackles on our lives. The shackles are the UGLY in all of this.
We need our freedom.
THE FUTURE OF THE OFFICE?
The thing is the future of the workplace isn’t something generic, it’s a constantly changing, living space to suit the individual user alongside the company vision and culture.
I imagine many companies post COVID-19 will end up having a new ‘way of working’ initiative in place with a much bigger focus on individual wellbeing. It’s crucial that when they do this they understand that what is needed by most is freedom. Freedom to choose how to BE and DO.
Telling us to work from home for 2,3 or 5 days a week is not freedom. We need to embrace technology and create workplaces that become hubs where individuals can come together, explore ideas, share, and develop strategy and project work. And as individuals, we are Trusted and given the freedom to choose where and when we work to get the job done, with all the tools, equipment, software and furniture in place to do so.
What is your future workplace vision?
Tell us your ideas and vision for your future workplace and let’s have a discussion about how we can make that vision a reality.