Office culture

McSlaggart

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The companies that AREN'T bringing people back: Twitter leads firms who will allow remote working forever as commercial landlords report only 10% of offices are being used and rents will drop by 20%


At the end of the virus most firms will see the benefits of remote working and may well lead to more people isolated working from home. I do not particularly like going to work but I think as a society we need to avoid a situation in which we allow many more people to be come isolated from the rest of society.
 


Dame_Enda

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Working from home is better to combat Climate Change and traffic congestion and for people who are housebound.
 

McSlaggart

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Working from home is better to combat Climate Change and traffic congestion and for people who are housebound.

I am not opposed to working from home. I do think we need to rethink on how we deal with the rise in isolation that it may bring. How many people have lots of contact but actually meet anyone in the real world is going to be a major issue of society. This is best addressed sooner rather than later.
 

paulp

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In my view, a lot of companies have transitioned to 100% staff remote working and have found the transition has gone a lot smoother than they would have imagined. I do think there are a number of points that should be considered a bit more before jumping straight into remote working forever.

1. That transition has gone well because the people who are remote working with their colleagues today have well established relationships with those colleagues, relationships that were developed over years of sitting together in the office.
2. Most people were very accommodating as in, this is a pandemic and the sense of "we'll do whatever we need to do to get through this" was strong.
3. I do think people need separation between their work environment and home environment. Most people don't have the home office setup that really they need for a long term home working environment.

I do think the option of smaller towns having shared office hubs, so people can live there, work in the shared office hub for the company based in the city is probably a better model that working from the home.
 

Dame_Enda

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I am not opposed to working from home. I do think we need to rethink on how we deal with the rise in isolation that it may bring. How many people have lots of contact but actually meet anyone in the real world is going to be a major issue of society. This is best addressed sooner rather than later.
Remote working will also help workers outside Dublin find work that is otherwise unavailable to them due to inability to afford living in Dublin. It can also save the cost of overheads from using physical offices.

When you consider the loss of the planned Datacentre in the west of Ireland a few yrs ago because of planning objections and legal challenges, it underlines that remote is the future.

Perhaps the Viking site in Woodquay would have been saved in the 1980s had remote working been an option rather than the Civic Offices.
 

Uganda

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In my view, a lot of companies have transitioned to 100% staff remote working and have found the transition has gone a lot smoother than they would have imagined. I do think there are a number of points that should be considered a bit more before jumping straight into remote working forever.

1. That transition has gone well because the people who are remote working with their colleagues today have well established relationships with those colleagues, relationships that were developed over years of sitting together in the office.
2. Most people were very accommodating as in, this is a pandemic and the sense of "we'll do whatever we need to do to get through this" was strong.
3. I do think people need separation between their work environment and home environment. Most people don't have the home office setup that really they need for a long term home working environment.

I do think the option of smaller towns having shared office hubs, so people can live there, work in the shared office hub for the company based in the city is probably a better model that working from the home.
It would be difficult to recruit and induct a new staff member to a home working environment.

The ultimate solution may be to have part time home working - 3 days in 2 days out etc
 

jmcc

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It would be difficult to recruit and induct a new staff member to a home working environment.
A lot of people might have psychological difficulties in working from a home environment. While some jobs might be doable with working from home, it may well increase stress on people who can no longer differentiate home from office working.

3 days in 2 days out etc
Must resist the urge to make a joke about teachers. :)
 

CatullusV

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It would be difficult to recruit and induct a new staff member to a home working environment.

The ultimate solution may be to have part time home working - 3 days in 2 days out etc
This is a huge issue. It certainly is for me right at the moment. When you start a job in a complex technical environment you need to be able to draw on your colleagues' knowledge swiftly - certainly during the induction period. Two days a week working from home mean that you are guaranteed at least one day in common with each of your colleagues.
 

Lumpy Talbot

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No
On another thread some months back before the crisis I recall we were just for fun making predictions and mine was that offices as social phenomena will disappear and that consequently a whole load of office/light industrial property in brownfield areas are about to become available for demolition.

Didn't think it would get this sort of accelerator but it also goes with my guess that the crisis will mostly accelerate existing trends dramatically and adaptation and a sharp rise in a return to economic activity is likely.

I think now that I've pondered we were discussing the homelessness crisis and all the policy maneouvers that conspire to create and do little to alleviate such an issue, and my idea is that a load of cheap land and demolition-ready light offices could be the answer to land for urban development for many towns and cities.
 

CatullusV

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On another thread some months back before the crisis I recall we were just for fun making predictions and mine was that offices as social phenomena will disappear and that consequently a whole load of office/light industrial property in brownfield areas are about to become available for demolition.

Didn't think it would get this sort of accelerator but it also goes with my guess that the crisis will mostly accelerate existing trends dramatically and adaptation and a sharp rise in a return to economic activity is likely.

I think now that I've pondered we were discussing the homelessness crisis and all the policy maneouvers that conspire to create and do little to alleviate such an issue, and my idea is that a load of cheap land and demolition-ready light offices could be the answer to land for urban development for many towns and cities.
A lot depends on the sector, I guess. I know in my case that it takes me at the very least six months to get a grasp of what are often very complex systems. It really is not easy to did by fiffing-faffing around with Skype, and rather than disturbing a colleague at your shoulder with a question they can answer in a moment if they are beside you, disturbing them for fifteen minutes.
 

Uganda

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A lot of people might have psychological difficulties in working from a home environment. While some jobs might be doable with working from home, it may well increase stress on people who can no longer differentiate home from office working.

Must resist the urge to make a joke about teachers. :)
I really meant people who work full days........... :D
 

McTell

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Rents will drop, property gamblers will go under (again), and the banks, well, you should have your money with starling. Or credit suisse.

What was the use of moving hundreds of peeps every day into a glass box miles away? Unless it gave the boss an ego trip ... and usually he isn't paying the bills.
 

farnaby

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In my view, a lot of companies have transitioned to 100% staff remote working and have found the transition has gone a lot smoother than they would have imagined. I do think there are a number of points that should be considered a bit more before jumping straight into remote working forever.

1. That transition has gone well because the people who are remote working with their colleagues today have well established relationships with those colleagues, relationships that were developed over years of sitting together in the office.
2. Most people were very accommodating as in, this is a pandemic and the sense of "we'll do whatever we need to do to get through this" was strong.
3. I do think people need separation between their work environment and home environment. Most people don't have the home office setup that really they need for a long term home working environment.

I do think the option of smaller towns having shared office hubs, so people can live there, work in the shared office hub for the company based in the city is probably a better model that working from the home.
Good summary. I'd add that right now there's a tolerance for family/home life interrupting conference calls as everyone's in the same boat. This won't apply when the office option is there - we'll revert to expecting office-standard professionalism.

I've done a lot of WFH and it suits me, being an introvert who appreciates the lone-working and a low rate of interruption. But the home-life separation takes a long time to fine-tune.
 

Lumpy Talbot

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No
Rents will drop, property gamblers will go under (again), and the banks, well, you should have your money with starling. Or credit suisse.

What was the use of moving hundreds of peeps every day into a glass box miles away? Unless it gave the boss an ego trip ... and usually he isn't paying the bills.
I had glimpsed Nirvana momentarily when I started working exclusively from home in the crisis. Unfortunately almost the first response from an increasingly corporate HR department was to send around an email informing everyone that rather helpfully they were going to run a course for everyone billed as 'efficient remote working', which turned out to be a 2.5hrs zoom-dollop of the usual crap involving big pieces of paper and small pieces of paper or something equally vapid.

They made it mandatory to attend four sessions which is 4 half days, or two working days, or expressed another way 10% of my working hours for a 4 week period. EDIT: Yeah. Forgot to mention that they then thought it would be a good idea to send around a pre-read and homework as well. Two ****ing hopes on that one...

I think the feedback will be 'thanks for your thoughtful ... event ... although perhaps we might have second thoughts when promoting efficiency in production and working whether it is wise to immediately steal 10% of employee's work-time in order to get in their way with bits of coloured paper'.

I'm not just banning such activities in any organisation the moment the world comes to its senses and appoints me Permanent Emir. It is the camps for these people and no mistake. Corporate HR helps me to understand why Pol Pot had anyone suspected of intellectualism marched out into the countryside and shot. I really get it.
 

Hewson

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My son works for one of the big tech companies, has recently started working from home and hopes he never has to go back to working in an office under strip lights again.

His whole outlook on life has improved.
 

Lumpy Talbot

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No
I wish it were under other circumstances as we all do. My quality of life and wellbeing has come on tremendously since the office shut-down. I never want to see another ersatz battery farm of despair again. I recognise there is probably good intent all 'round. But all corporate HR are still going to the camps when my day comes. They can make friends with Marketing in the cells.

Regrettable but necessary.
 

Lumpy Talbot

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No
Biggest problem really in a major shift away from the office for me in this crisis in terms of wellbeing and mental health is a sort of 'survivor guilt' in a very mild form.

Amid all the bad news and disruption to normal life, I've been very lucky with timing and location. Lockdown doesn't bother me as I'm fine in my own company and I've concentrated on pulling some positives out of it now I'm master of my own time and have recovered some welcome autonomy.

But the first few weeks it was hard to shake off a vague feeling of guilt for actual moments of quiet enjoyment at home either working or not working. The unaccustomed peace and quiet. Being able to put music on while I work and break when I feel I need it. I did have the latter anyway but my thinking seems clearer, concentration and focus better.

The slight guilt was there that my quality of life has improved by my lights anyway.
 

ShoutingIsLeadership

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In my view, a lot of companies have transitioned to 100% staff remote working and have found the transition has gone a lot smoother than they would have imagined. I do think there are a number of points that should be considered a bit more before jumping straight into remote working forever.

1. That transition has gone well because the people who are remote working with their colleagues today have well established relationships with those colleagues, relationships that were developed over years of sitting together in the office.
2. Most people were very accommodating as in, this is a pandemic and the sense of "we'll do whatever we need to do to get through this" was strong.
3. I do think people need separation between their work environment and home environment. Most people don't have the home office setup that really they need for a long term home working environment.

I do think the option of smaller towns having shared office hubs, so people can live there, work in the shared office hub for the company based in the city is probably a better model that working from the home.
People used to going to an office might miss that routine, at least for a while. Why though would a young person who can control their life and talk to anybody on the planet without leaving their bed, feel the need to physically separate their work life and home life? Why would somebody who can't wait 60 seconds for a film to download, spend hours a day commuting?

Office life was always dying (I have been saying it for a few years 😀 ), this has just accelerated it.
 


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