Society/Culture Working from home vs forced back to the office

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spinynorman

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Dec 1, 2014
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Since the 1960s, office working hours have barely changed. This in spite of women entering the workforce and that basically doubling, and the personal computer revolution making work life easier and faster.

Open plan offices have become more common, which are shown to have worse results for staff morale etc. I know that some of my own discontent with working from my office is the sheer lack of privacy. Giving people their own offices, letting them decorate them etc is a solid incentive to actually tempt people to come back in.

It’s pretty obvious that the majority of opposition to working from home sticking is from the class solidarity of capital, not wanting to see this hit to commercial real estate and not wanting to see workers be too accustomed to this accidentally won flexibility.

I think there is an inevitable chance of a rift between those with the luxury of choosing their workspace and those who do not that will need to be reconciled by organised labour. But we should also support people in their right to work in the way that suits them.
 

Goroyals22

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Jun 29, 2014
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That literally the best bit about working from home for me🤣

Correct. Stuff the office politics, gossip and generally annoying co workers sideways. Once a week is all I can tolerate dealing with my team.


Sent from my iPhone using BigFooty.com
 

peetoo

Norm Smith Medallist
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Net immigration is getting back to normal, but those opposed say there’s not enough houses

There’s plenty of empty housing and plenty of empty offices. And we know civilisation does not collapse with wfh

So we hardly need to do any extra building, we just need to use what we have better.
 

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Carn The Berries

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Sep 16, 2008
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Pinocchio vibes

Pretty misleading to equivocate bosses saying WFH was good to "avoid total cessation of business during the pandemic" with them wanting workers to return to the office. Not exactly apples and apples is it?

It also uses Twitter/X as an example, despite the person who initially made the claim no longer being there.

There is a balance, WFH has its benefits (which I am lucky enough to take advantage of in my role) but I have no issue with my employer specifying that I need to be in the office a certain proportion of time.

Plenty of people got caught up in the "grass is greener" opportunities that came up when WFH became the norm. I don't think it's unrealistic for some of those CEO who may have gone the early crow about it to do an about face in the interests of keeping their businesses efficient.
 

peetoo

Norm Smith Medallist
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Pretty misleading to equivocate bosses saying WFH was good to "avoid total cessation of business during the pandemic" with them wanting workers to return to the office. Not exactly apples and apples is it?

It also uses Twitter/X as an example, despite the person who initially made the claim no longer being there.

There is a balance, WFH has its benefits (which I am lucky enough to take advantage of in my role) but I have no issue with my employer specifying that I need to be in the office a certain proportion of time.

Plenty of people got caught up in the "grass is greener" opportunities that came up when WFH became the norm. I don't think it's unrealistic for some of those CEO who may have gone the early crow about it to do an about face in the interests of keeping their businesses efficient.

Agreed, but it’s fun to watch
 

Rotayjay

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Cap

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ElectricG

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What about WFH and how it might contribute to social isolation / depression?
 

peetoo

Norm Smith Medallist
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Let’s not forget before lockdowns corporate minds were being applied to encourage people to work from home more
 

Gavin Excell

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Apr 22, 2007
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I read articles about alleged crackdown on working from home by some employers and that things are changing, but now sure how true this is.
 

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Carn The Berries

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Absolute insanity. Hopefully they can move on and make more money for others
Why is it insanity to ask/expect staff to be in the office at least 3 days per week? The benefits that come from incidental conversations in a collaborative environment are significant, as well as building team rapport, not just with those in direct reporting lines, but also more broadly within an organisation. Those interactions just simply don't happen in a WFH environment.

Those who wish to stay entirely/majority at home are welcome to do so and take the associated hit to their bonuses (in the examples given).
 

Cap

TheBrownDog
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Why is it insanity to ask/expect staff to be in the office at least 3 days per week? The benefits that come from incidental conversations in a collaborative environment are significant, as well as building team rapport, not just with those in direct reporting lines, but also more broadly within an organisation. Those interactions just simply don't happen in a WFH environment.
Lots of words there. Not all applicable to everyone and more than likely most with no measurable or meaningful impact to performance for most employees.

Not everyone needs to go into an office to hear what you did on the weekend.

But sure, get people in periodically if you want, however;
Those who wish to stay entirely/majority at home are welcome to do so and take the associated hit to their bonuses (in the examples given).
Bonuses are based on output. Not having to deal with others inability to self motivate.
 

Carn The Berries

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Lots of words there. Not all applicable to everyone and more than likely most with no measurable or meaningful impact to performance for most employees.

Not everyone needs to go into an office to hear what you did on the weekend.

But sure, get people in periodically if you want, however;

Bonuses are based on output. Not having to deal with others inability to self motivate.
Incidental conversations aren't solely social in nature. The amount of additional business intelligence you gain from ad-hoc conversations with co-workers is significant. We can disagree on the impact on performance, I think there is something to be gained for almost all employees having regular, ad-hoc interaction with co-workers.

Bonuses being tied to more "holistic" concepts than mere output isn't a new concept. Particularly for senior management, setting a good example for their team is something that should be considered part of their role.
 

Cap

TheBrownDog
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Incidental conversations aren't solely social in nature. The amount of additional business intelligence you gain from ad-hoc conversations with co-workers is significant. We can disagree on the impact on performance, I think there is something to be gained for almost all employees having regular, ad-hoc interaction with co-workers.
There is genuinely nothing stopping these happening on teams or whatever interaction tool you use.

As I said though, I'm not against some element of being in the office and that differs for set scenarios.

But you don't take a performance bonus away. That's just A grade s**t leadership.
Bonuses being tied to more "holistic" concepts than mere output isn't a new concept. Particularly for senior management, setting a good example for their team is something that should be considered part of their role.
A good example, perhaps by having a good representation of part time and wfh senior leaders.
 

peetoo

Norm Smith Medallist
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Incidental conversations aren't solely social in nature. The amount of additional business intelligence you gain from ad-hoc conversations with co-workers is significant. We can disagree on the impact on performance, I think there is something to be gained for almost all employees having regular, ad-hoc interaction with co-workers.

Bonuses being tied to more "holistic" concepts than mere output isn't a new concept. Particularly for senior management, setting a good example for their team is something that should be considered part of their role.
Agree but even in the office you have to seek people out in hotdesk situations

It will take a while for all to adjust. In the meantime we need to keep the faith and keep going in for no real reason sometimes
 

Demonic Ascent

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The only reason for their outrage is they are worried the property values and rents in the cbds will fall with fewer people in the city. Their faux tears for all the coffee shop owners is transparent.

If I didn't have kids I'd probably go in more, twice a week is fine but forcing 3 plus days a week in the office is just dumb. I get less done in the office due to frequent interruptions, people wanting to have a chat, longer to go grab a coffee, toilet etc when I'm at home I can block out calls/messages to focus on getting work done or triage work through emails/messages. Employers who force employees in 3-5 days a week will need to offer something else in place to make them more lucrative as employers - being able to socialise with your coworkers isn't that.
 
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Demonic Ascent

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I guess my point was more that it might be “enabling” for the types who struggle to get out of bed, leave the house, etc.
Or they actually have a better chance of holding down a job by being able to work from home as they take fewer sick days due to their mental health issues.
 

mr bagcroft

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The only reason for their outrage is they are worried the property values and rents in the cbds will fall with fewer people in the city. Their faux tears for all the coffee shop owners is transparent.

If I didn't have kids I'd probably go in more, twice a week is fine but forcing 3 plus days a week in the office is just dumb. I get less done in the office due to frequent interruptions, people wanting to have a chat, longer to go grab a coffee, toilet etc when I'm at home I can block out calls/messages to focus on getting work done or triage work through emails/messages. Employers who force employees in 3-5 days a week will need to offer something else in place to make them more lucrative as employers - being able to socialise with your coworkers isn't that.
Agreed. For them to pretend its not about self interest and/or pure ego is pathetic.
Sorry Boomer the work place is not boomer'ing as it has in the past.
 

Gavin Excell

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Agreed. For them to pretend its not about self interest and/or pure ego is pathetic.
Sorry Boomer the work place is not boomer'ing as it has in the past.
There appears to be 2 camps in the loudest pro work from office believers

1. Those with interests linked to office block property investment
2. Those who think that people who work from home are slackers aren't really working
 

ElectricG

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Feb 18, 2019
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Or they actually have a better chance of holding down a job by being able to work from home as they take fewer sick days due to their mental health issues.
I don’t really see it that way. Purely anecdotal but I know at least a couple of people who are “wallowing” in their WFH. I kind of see working in the office as one of those expectations that are annoying but ultimately for our own good.
 

Seeds

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Sep 15, 2007
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There appears to be 2 camps in the loudest pro work from office believers

1. Those with interests linked to office block property investment
2. Those who think that people who work from home are slackers aren't really working
The third are jealous workers who work in industries where you need to be on site. However, they don't realise that in the long run they will benefit from higher wages as labour supply switches to wfh industries.
 

burge13

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Jan 25, 2019
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Or they actually have a better chance of holding down a job by being able to work from home as they take fewer sick days due to their mental health issues.
Sick Leave usage went way down, 30% less roughly, when WFH became more widely available in a previous job (4700 staff).

Productivity seemed to go up but I could only gauge what reported to me for that so anecdotal.

So if staff are happier WFH, productivity is the same or more, how can anyone justify forcing back into the office.

As I said previously, it's just inept middle management who can't manage people working remotely that are struggling. They're the problem, not the staff
 

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