The success of movies like the cult-hit Office Space show that people haven’t been down with the traditional office for a long-time. The average office rat scurrying around the corporate maze thinks the office is a drag and has thought that for a while, not that they’d tell that to the boss.
The COVID-19 Pandemic made people work remotely and embrace home offices and coffee shops as alternatives to coworking spaces. More than a geographic change in perspective, this has made workers have COVID Epiphanies. The Great Resignation 2021 finds people quitting jobs in droves to seek out greener pastures and remote work flexibility.
Remote work, or something similar, is the future of work.
The Great Resignation is a term coined by Dr. Anthony Klotz, professor of management at Texas A&M University, in May 2021. He predicted that pandemic epiphanies would make people rethink their professional goals and quit their jobs to look for more fulfilling work.
It is not all sunshine and rainbows though; a lot of these resignations were holdovers from before the lockdown, people who put plans to quit on hold, and people with no magic moment of self-realization who are simply just burned out.
There is also some evidence that people are quitting their jobs because they want remote flexibility and the freedom to work from home.
What does it mean to work remotely? This is a very new thing going in the world of work, some say the future of work, so there is of course going to be confusion. Because of COVID, most people’s thoughts about remote work were that it was a necessary and uncomfortable solution to social distancing needs.
Employees could not work in the office for their own health and safety, so we had to work remotely, meaning outside the office. The office is still the default in this perspective.
Yet, as people got more used to remote work, they started to like it better than the traditional office. Employers started seeing the benefits of remote work such as boosted productivity and the cost savings of having no brick and mortar office space.
Work-life balance is often touted as a huge benefit of remote work.
So, a lot of jobs are sticking to remote work flexibility or abandoning the office entirely.
It is way too early to plant our flag in either the yes or no camp, a lot of research needs to be done by people way smarter than us, but it’s safe to say that the push for remote work is adding to the greatness factor of the great resignation.
According to Microsoft’s Work Trends Index, 73 percent of workers want flexible remote work options to stay. Remote employees want to remain in remote teams. It is testament to the staying power and the future of working remotely.
Yet, a lot of employers want to “return to normal”. They feel that the traditional office is more professional and productive, but there is a lot of evidence to say that remote work is just as good or better than office-first work models.
This disconnect between what business owners want and what their remote workers want is definitely a cause for the great resignation.
Employees are quitting in huge numbers partly because some of them want the option to work from home and their employer is not giving it to them.
Also, there is a huge trend in social media for influencers to be digital nomads. Travelling the world and working from any flat surface that can hold a laptop.
There is a great deal of momentum behind the WFH Revolution. Remote work is definitely here to stay and will be part of our collective futures, whether the traditional office stands the test of time is another question.
Once people have freedom, they don’t want to give it back.
You might ask, “If there is no office then what am I being remote from?” You’re one smart cookie because that is a great question.
Looking for a synonym for remote work? You’re not alone! It is an ungainly word that will be put aside after office-first is replaced by newer work models.
Remote implies distance and sounds negative and it’ll be associated too closely with the pandemic even though it contributed to remote growth.
Distributed team model is much better, WFHomie is a big advocate of this term, as it implies equality between all the places where people work for a common cause regardless of time zones.
The head office? The coffee shop down the street? Your mom’s basement? All distributed. All the same. All equal. The term distributed teams sounds better on the ear and is more descriptive than remote work.
Hybrid is not exactly the same as the ones above as it doesn’t refer to the same work model. Hybrid workplaces usually have an office with most, if not all, employees living close by that are cool with people working from home either some or all the time.
Hybrid work basically means more choice in working spaces.
‘Hybrid’ sounds a little bit too sci-fi for us, but you do you!