Remote and hybrid work isn’t for everyone and there are times we need to connection that being together brings. The key leadership should focus on is being intentional, mandating orders to “Return to Office or else” is highlighting the choice many are taking to not return. A baby boomer who quit his 6-figure job rather than return to the office says managers are threatened by remote work and just want people back so they can see them working (msn.com)
Flexibility is something we have always needed, the last 3 years has simply taken away the veneer off. “The more choice we have, the more autonomy we have, I think, the happier we are,” and I wonder if this feeling (expressed by a “boomer”) is one felt across all age ranges.
Or is it a feeling of trust? A recent vlog (https://buff.ly/3YNRasm) wondered if you can’t see me leading, how will you know I’m a leader? What do you think? Has the 9-5 framework covered in cubicle fabric been torn down or are we going to return to the way it was?
Your topic is now coming into the bright sunlight, not blinding but really eye-opening for many people who are the leaders making very important decisions sometimes seeming to fast walk back to an earlier time when there was no work place/space choice. Isn’t it ironic that we are finally figuring out many people really do work best in a home or hybrid/or remotely? This isn’t a guarantee that it will of course work for certain occupations/professionals. It seems industry/business/educational environments with leadership insight and sometimes exploring all possibilities is constant flux. You mention flexibility- if this defines this in part, yes, I am in agreement that thoughtful conversation and action is required.
What happens in lower ed, higher ed, which is more ;my wheelhouse, (as you know), this is very sticky. The political mechanisms in education are somewhat and sometimes entrenched and take years even for minor changes to happen if ever. I can be hopeful that since change in leadership is inevitable why not embrace a favorable redefining of remote/hybrid work embracing this trust in moving to a better space with better, will have a more productive outcome for all.
Even though I do agree the more autonomy we have the happier we probably are, I do believe this isn’t age related and I’m not a fan of the word happy… happiness is transient feeling, so maybe I would argue to choose a different word there.
Great topic and inspiring as always Bill!
Good points @Roxann and I think this is going to be a moving target for all organizations, I really don’t think there’s a “1 size fits all” model if (big IF) the organization wants to attract and retain a diverse workforce.
I’ve been watching my twins who entered college in the fall of 2020 and their expectations of classes, and soon to be employers, is all about flexibility and need. They have chosen classes based on hybrid options, if the class required in-person there had to be a clear value proposition for them to consider and choose (or not in 1 case) that course. So if the sage on the stage is the driver, the riders now consider other options and are choosing flexibility over SME performance.
I think there’s a blend every organization, and every person, will find and the hard part is the blend will constantly change. The flexibility I needed when my children were younger is not the same I need now, the connections a new hire needs to be successful is different than someone in place for 3 years. Change is the state of now (or maybe kNOW is now? I need more coffee…)