As the pandemic winds down due to vaccination, business leaders seem to be divided as to how to proceed when it comes to working from home versus completely office-based employment. While many look forward to the day where business will be conducted as usual or strictly from the office, others have been open to adopting a hybrid in-office and home-based solution.
The truth is, in most situations, allowing employees to work at least partly from home can be beneficial for companies and certain workers, though not all. This concept, however, can work in a business’s favor when it comes to recruiting and retaining employees that need this freedom. That is why companies must keep up with the current times.
Here are just some of the reasons that a hybrid work model is best for businesses as they head into the future:
Different Generations Want Different Things
Generation Z, those born after 1996, are much more social in the office setting, where they tend to socialize as they were accustomed to in high school and college. Other generations of workers, like members of Generation X and Millennials, live the majority of their lives outside work and look at a job as a way to finance said lives. For this reason, they don’t mind the freedom of working from home.
Promotion and Performance is Judged More Fairly
The proverbial “playing field” has been leveled between those employees that have time to network and schmooze over drinks and those that have at-home responsibilities that prevent them from doing so. The idea that all “face-to-face” chats have had to occur virtually has eliminated the unintentional advantage given to those that had the time to socialize with potential business connections.
Women Regain Some of the Advantages that they Previously Lost
Women that wish to raise a family and stay at home with their kids may traditionally have chosen to leave the workforce and put their careers on hold; a choice most men never had to consider. The ability to work from home can be a game-changer for women who wish to focus on family. This is also true for many individuals in the caregiver role – whether caring for children or aging family members.
Not All Jobs Need to Take Place in an Office
If you evaluate each role in the office, you can see that many jobs can be done from home, and there is no need to insist they be conducted in the office. This will save on carbon emissions due to less commuting, which also means less money on gas for the worker and savings on real estate and equipment for the company.
Keep Different Personalities in Mind
While some jobs can’t be done remotely, some workers just do not work well remotely. Some, usually extroverts, live for the camaraderie of a team environment, while many introverts enjoy the peace and quiet of conducting business at home. Also, some people can be self-directed, while others need to be supervised or tend to lose focus.
In conclusion, companies should stay open to the idea of a hybrid business model because working from home and in the office are both advantageous in their own ways. Hopefully, the pandemic has proven this point to businesses that would not otherwise consider it.