The Work From Home Paradox

The Work from Home Paradox

Its Work Form Home for me! A nice sense of joy settles in! Intellectuals already had many ‘deep dive’ discussions and research on this topic. Here, I make an attempt to express my observations and experiences. 

When the pandemic started, Work From Home quickly turned to an unquestionable choice to every employer, losing its existing ‘status quo’ as privileged ‘employee benefit’ practiced by many progressive employer brands.  

“Largely for the working population, I believe Work From Home has been a by-product of this pandemic. whether it  is a boon, or a bane is a matter of deeper Insight.”  

In the initial stages of experiencing this, people were quite excited due to perceived flexibility of this arrangement, inherent features of remote working, and for some probably due to attached fear factor of pandemic scenario. As the days gone by, some started sinking into the inherent benefits of WFH, and some started to realise that working from the home environment for a longer period is an uncomfortable option. 

The notable point here is that such an arrangement has worked differently for different set of people. There are some key factors which play between people and these choices. To understand the human dynamics on this, we first need to understand the workforce demographics, their mental and emotional dimensions, generational aspirations etc. 

A female, who has just started her motherhood probably will seek an option to have WFH at least for a longer stint, if not permanently due to its inherent benefits.  

A self-motivated performing employee would not mind working from the jungle so far as the pre-fixed goals are met. That gives her a sense of satisfaction and achievement. An employee who does not have a conducive environment to focus on work while working from home, is a prospective candidate for Work From Office. For many young millennials, making to office is matter of relishing the ‘moment of truth’ realised through watching and interacting with the butterflies around. 

Some people look for a nicely blended cake on this subject which usually comes as a combo offer, presumably with best of both, WFH and WFO. On the other side, most of the employers are still trying to validate which scenario gives them better employee productivity. So, understanding these dynamics become vital and inevitable while we rush to make conclusive remarks on this subject.  

Now, the unseen side of the coin has a strange scenario. More exactly, an alarming situation probably. Here comes the Employee Engagement! Again, good number of theories have gone by to discuss and understand this most trending topic under the HR vertical. So, this scenario has made employee engagement and employee productivity as the most debatable areas for the organizations to deal with. 

One thing is quite undisputed here. As a human being, as an employee, you need to be part of inclusive workforce with diverse set of people around, breathing some social air in the office which will be essential for your social and emotional wellbeing as these two factors considerably helps you in professional and social success. 

On the hiring side, many are recruiting people almost virtually, at times not even having a virtual face-to-face interview, and starts working remotely leaving the new joiner with a sense of detachment and disengagement from the day one! This makes many new employees less connected towards the manager and the team and less engaged towards the organization causing much higher ratio of early attrition levels. 

I believe, most certainly, we need to be little more conscious and perceptive here to deal with this situation appropriately! 

Author:
Heads People Management function at Qtech. His key role embraces people strategy and culture for business success entailing talent hiring and management, digital transformations, organisational development, and change management. For over 16 years, He has worked across IT, ITES and Infra with key focus on HR Operations and Strategy.
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