Is Flexible Working For You?
With Deloittes announcing this week 20,000 UK based staff can work from home permanently after lockdown restrictions are lifted, it raises the question for more firms, large or small, to see if this new norm has worked well for their business or been a hinderance.
There has been a definite wide awakening of how new technology and communication tools can absolutely add value. A commute to London for a 1hr meeting is a thing of the past, and whilst we can get annoyed at Wi-Fi capabilities and the awkward pause between speech, the benefits of a zoom meeting versus a day out of the office are tenfold.
Businesses have been quick to adapt and see the bottom-line benefits. However, the opposite can be said for perhaps creativity, innovation and true blue sky thinking. There is something valuable in getting many heads in a room to brainstorm a problem, innovate a solution and to draw a team together for a successful end game. You simply cannot gain this same level of joint thinking over 8 tiny faces bobbing about on a screen.
So perhaps a middle ground needs to be found, as Deloitte has obviously discovered. Their staff will not be required to attend the office for a fixed number of days every week. This really is the key. The message is clear, come in when you need to, when the business will benefit from a face to face and work from home the rest of the time. Individuals will be making the choice, making the call as to the validity of their presence. Not only diverging responsibility onto individual ownership (clever) but also allowing people the freedom to see where they see their value is best optimised. Again, all eluding to the theory of, do your job, achieve your goals, by the best way possible for the business.
This strategy puts far more emphasis on individual empowerment, which is a proven key driver to success. So, get your home offices at the ready, with lockdown lifting, will you be working from home more permanently?