Whether it’s an at home business, freelancing or working for an employer, remote work has long been established, but when Covid-19 hit in 2020, fear, confusion, even panic arose and many of us were left without jobs. Though we’ve established a baseline for the disease and protocols have been put in place, we’re still swimming in flux. Whether helping our children through online learning or having our own work meetings on Zoom, the truth is that things may never go back to how they used to be so where does that leave us?
Working From Home As A Way To Thrive During And After The Pandemic
The global pandemic has changed how we work and communicate and now more than ever there is a push for us to work from home (WFH). Not only are we safer health wise, but many of us realize greater flexibility, more time with our families and yes, no more commuting which obviously saves us time and frustration from sitting in traffic and spending less money on gas and car maintenance. Many people are looking at WFH as a real long-term option and not something to do temporarily as we wait for Covid to pass us by. We were forced into temporary WFH situations due to the pandemic, but now many prefer it as a real long-term option.
Is There Any Real Benefit For Employers To Allow Their Employees To Work From Home?
So, is there any real benefit for an employer to allow employees to WFH? Some employers might be a bit resistant to allow their workers to do this, trading in long gab sessions by the cooler for chat sessions throughout the day, but Sharon Koifman a remote employer for the last two decades in his book Surviving Remote Work, notes that MIT’s Sloan School of Management’s research shows that remote employers are happier and more independent meaning they’re more productive thus needing less management. Because working from home is more enjoyable partly due to less commuting, remote employees take less vacations. Imagine having employees who are more happy, more productive, take less time off and need to be managed less!
Our Current Understanding of “Work” Needs A Makeover
Understanding why some employers have some apprehension about allowing existing employees to WFH or hiring remote employees might give us some understanding. For so long, work has been something we do outside of the home and usually not close to home. It’s almost like there needs to be some kind of demarcation that consists of “work” and “home” being completely separate entities. Sharon Koifman echoes this sentiment in Surviving Remote Work, stating that we’ve been programmed for years to feel that work is done only in the office and that anything else seems strange.
Even our 5 day, 40 hour work week which has been a standard was created in the industrial era according to some research done by NBC. At the time, it was a vast improvement negotiated by individuals and groups such as labor unions and even Henry Ford given that many factory workers were working 12 hours a day. Though these laws were hard won on the backs of many, modern society and most recently the pandemic have given us new rules and expectations of how we work and ultimately live. Millennial workers for example demand more work and life balance and Microsoft Japan experimented with a four-day work week without a decrease in pay yielding happier workers and an increase in productivity by 40%! Again, I’m bowled over by these seemingly small changes that create big positive shifts that The Economist found.
Is Hiring Global Workers For Your Business The Right Solution?
Employers might find it enticing that their willingness to hire remote workers opens up quite a large pool of potential employees. Going global now gives both employers and employees more room to find the right fit for them. Sharon Koifman, CEO of DistantJobs has been passionate about creating the right environment for WFH through testing new technologies, managing and motivating others. Koifman has solid advice for remote workers and also for management in his new book Surviving Remote Work.