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The Hybrid Work Style, or how everyone wants to work less from the office

If March 2020 saw most workers trying to adjust to working from the “comfort” of their homes, the talk right now is all about hybrid working.

Office spaces are no longer what we thought them to be – the place where you just go to deliver your 9-to-5 duties. Now, a proximity office may be a more suitable workplace for an employee, with the hybrid work phenomena starting in full swing.

Over 55% of US workers responded in a survey about their desire to have a hybrid adjustment when it comes to office time – meaning they would like to return to the office, but at their own pace.

Employers were scared at first – how’s this going to affect the productivity of our staff? As it turns out, the pandemic didn’t impede productivity – not at all! In fact, 94% of workers consider that their productivity remained constant while remote working and even increased in some situations, according to different studies.

The same studies suggest that 83% of employers considered transitioning to hybrid work and were not considering calling their employees back for full-time jobs at the office! 

What is Hybrid Work?

Employees want to work in a hybrid fashion – we get that. But – what is hybrid work? As a concept, hybrid work is the act of working remotely and from the office in the same space of time. However, this concept gives birth to a few categories of hybrid work.

Firstly, there are employees who work full-time on-site, from the office and other employees that work full-time remotely. Besides that, other companies prefer to have all employees on-site for a few days a week, while the rest of the week is reserved for productive work from home. There can also be a combination of these two.

All these combinations have their ups-and-downs, but are better, as concepts, than working full-time from office spaces. 

Hybrid work gives employees the opportunity to take care of different aspects of their life, while being more productive and focused. 

The office space, however, does not stay the same. With all the changes taking place, offices have to adapt to this new workflow. How?

How is the Classic Workplace evolving?

The workplace, as we know it, is evolving. It’s no longer the cramped-up, tables-alike, bean-bag in a corner white room that we once knew. 

If employers want to get people back in the office, they’re going to offer more than just free coffee and Fruit Friday. Offices are transitioning towards a more meetings-focused workplace. 

More and more employers that adopted hybrid work are reserving office time for collaborative work and meetings, while remote work, be that in a proximity office or from your home, should be reserved for productive, mindful work. 

Do you remember your office before the pandemic? Wasn’t it loud? People were constantly coming to you with problems that they could’ve solved themselves. Also, there were some employees that tried to hog some of your time of productive work with talks about gossip, the latest movies they’ve seen or how they should visit their distant relatives, but don’t have time.

Office spaces should look nothing like that in our present day. They should have more social spaces, for collaborative work and for cooling down after a long brainstorming session. 

Employers should also create a noise-free zone, where people can go and perform gruesome tasks with care and consideration in a productive manner. 

What hybrid work should look like? 

With all these changes in mind, a question easily springs – what should hybrid work look like? We have already seen how offices should change, but let’s think for a second about how that change will come into the bigger picture. 

Research has found that employees don’t like hybrid work when it involves coming to the office at certain times in a week. Most of the opinions are tackling the same issue: it’s not so hard to switch your mood. One day being in your cozy pyjamas, working for a few hours productively then entering some meetings, only to jump in a suit-and-tie and go on your 1-hour-long commute the next day, just to reach the office. Of course, remote work has its downs also – it’s easier to slack off or unfocus. Also, parents have a hard time focusing on their work while remote, so maybe there’s a solution for that.

The best way to tackle hybrid work is a combination between office time, remote working and working from a proximity office, like one of our Nookas. A proximity office offers you the serenity you need to achieve your goals, while having the best technology available, in case of a meeting! 

Working for a few hours a day in a proximity office can raise your productivity! It’s like going to the office, but without the hassle of commuting and having to hear what Mark had for breakfast 3 days ago. 

Regarding hybrid work, your team should decide, together, when is the best time to go to the office. Maybe a team only needs to get to the office once every two weeks. If it works, it works! Just make sure to plan ahead your brainstorming sessions and meetings and also, indulge in some small talk with your colleagues – it’s nice to catch up on people you work with.

Why do employees want to work in a hybrid fashion? 

Hybrid work, as already mentioned, is the new norm. So, why do employees prefer this, over to only remote or full-time on-site working?

  • Comfort – life sometimes gets in the way – bills to pay, errands to run – and employers know that. It’s not the end of the world if you’re having a break mid-day – just make sure to let your team know this.
  • Setting boundaries – working only remotely can cause a big dent in one’s personal boundaries. While your work-home commute was taking you about 1 hour, now it’s about 2 seconds – jumping from bed straight to your desk. Thus, a proximity office can solve this issue – as you set your boundary by going outside of your personal space, but still work productively!
  • Work when most productive – productivity will not stay with you for an 8-hour shift. Most people can’t be productive for so long – also, people tend to be split between night owls and early risers. If, as a night owl, you’re required to do your most productive work during the daytime, you may not perform as expected! 
  • Choose where you work from – places like coffee places, proximity offices or co-working spaces are on the rise – try one out for yourself!

These are but a few reasons why people prefer to work in a hybrid fashion. If you have others in mind, share them with us! 

Conclusion

Work styles are ever-changing nowadays. In 2020, remote was the way to go. Now, we prefer hybrid work. Maybe there are people that would still like to work on-site full-time, but studies show us that more and more of us prefer to work less from the office. 

Employees have more power now than ever. If that power is used appropriately, change at the workplace is on the better side in the near future!

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