Undoubtedly the pandemic has affected the workplace. It’s caused job loss, job reduction, and a reduced job market for job seekers.
For those of us still lucky enough to be employed it’s changed how we work. The biggest change being that many of us are now working from home. We are also learning how to do our job in new ways.
So, what are the lessons to be learned from this forced changed? What are the benefits of it? The drawbacks?
I think that the first lesson that we all learned is that for many of us we can just as easily, or even more easily, complete our job responsibilities from home. Instead of in-person meetings, we are now meetings face to face over Microsoft Teams.
We’ve also learned that some people need the stronger workplace interaction that working onsite provides. Often extroverts, they find that working from home is too isolating. So, while many enjoy the distraction-free workplace, many are yearning for the hustle and bustle of being in the office.
I think many of us have found that the lack of commute is a huge benefit. It saves us gas, wear and tear on our car, and also time. When our work day is done, it is done and we are already home. It’s a luxury we will likely miss when/if we have to return to the office. In addition, many of us enjoy being able to more casually dress for work.
As noted above, many miss the social aspect that the workplace provides. This has caused many to feel isolated, depressed, and anxious. “Walk-by” conversations obviously are no longer happening either, which can be a drawback both for colleagues and management. As a manager, I no longer can walk around and see what my employees are up to.
A future drawback may be coming… Many have already expressed a strong desire to not return to the workplace. They have worked from home for so long, now know that it “works,” and no longer see a reason to add in the inconveniences noted above back into their workday. It will be interesting to see if employers decide to let successful employees continue to work from home after that pandemic or if they call them back into the office. If they do, there is bound to be a bit of job dissatisfaction.
How has the Pandemic Affected Your Job?
Are you still working? If so, what changes have occurred because of the pandemic? Do you like these changes? Want them to be permanent or just temporary?