Now that the imposed restrictions have been lifted, companies are beginning to reopen their offices, and bosses are calling their employees to rejoin the workforce again.
After working from home for more than a year now, employees have mixed opinions about rejoining the office. Some of you may be excited to return to normal life and meet everyone once again; at the same time, many employees feel anxious and pressured to rejoin the office.
Despite the popularity of remote work, many CEOs are worried about employees becoming less engaged and remaining at home, and the pressure is outright and clearly stated. But, some of the pressure is unsaid, but we all know that it’s there.
However, the old ways of working are not the only way to prove your worth. Many companies have achieved higher levels of employee engagement even as teams went remote almost overnight with no planning or strategy in place!
Anyway, amidst all these changes and different opinions, How do you deal with your boss hinting or saying outright, “come back to the office”? To solve this dilemma, I have developed a method that can help you find the solutions.
This method comprises four simple questions to understand how you feel about rejoining the office. The four questions are:-
- What do I aspire my days to look like ahead?
- What causes me stress?
- How is my boss defining success right now?
- What do I value most?
Let’s look at them in detail and figure out how you feel and what you need from work as you move forward remotely and in the office.
What do I aspire my days to look like ahead?
The first step to figuring out what you want from your life is understanding how things are going now.
Take a second and remember all of the reasons why working remotely has been so great for you—and write them down if possible!
In the wake of a pandemic, it is important to consider how your workday can best be productive. It’s not always about staying logged on all day; think about managing interactions that are taxing and those that recharge you instead. When looking at these things, remember to also consider any bad habits from before the epidemic so you could change them for good if needed!
What stresses me out?
Now that you’re done with your list of pros and cons, it’s time to start figuring out how these might play out for you. First, identity what stresses you the most in the office setting- may be tight deadlines or difficult coworkers? And then think about how those stressors might be different outside of work hours!
The key is to differentiate between what’s stressing you out and what annoys you so that working from home or in the office can help alleviate both.
It’s important to understand what is causing your anxiety. So, in case you’re feeling anxious because you’re not back in the office, try and get deep with it: where are those feelings coming from? Did they start before or after one of your recent vacations? It might be hard, but this information will help better diagnose where these feelings come from to fix them for good!
How is my boss defining success right now?
It’s time to reconsider all the things for your manager and organization. From above, we know that managing a remote team is not easy. It requires more communication, forethought, and emotional intelligence skills than managing an office-based one do. Many managers are inexperienced in this role because they have never done it before or received any training on doing so well from their organization beforehand.
Here’s where you may have to manage your boss a bit, particularly if you’re working remotely and your boss is uncertain about what you are doing with your time; they will naturally hover around you more. A new way of approaching this situation may involve talking to them before the start date so that expectations are clearer for all parties involved. It’ll help reduce their anxiety, which helps lessen yours because uncertainty breeds fear within everyone.
Communication in a remote work situation is paramount. By creating goals and explanations of what you’re doing, your boss will trust that their business doesn’t miss out on anything because they can rely on updates from the distance worker. And if they aren’t good at communication? Take the initiative yourself!
What do I value?
After analyzing your ideal workday, your stressors, and your manager, it’s time to look at the bigger picture. The pandemic has given you a chance to reflect on what your ideal work-life will be like. Think about the type of person you want to become and then take actionable steps towards achieving this vision for yourself to make sure that when everything finally settles, there’s no question about who has been or where they are going.
It’s not always easy to be a good boss, but it is important. You need to take care of yourself and the people who work to maintain balance physically and psychologically.
In 2020, you probably learned an entirely new way almost overnight. And so, you can surely figure out how to successfully manage a hybrid schedule and work in the way that suits you.
It’s important to understand what you want from your workday and the feelings that motivate others to feel confident about your success. Once this is accomplished, ask for things that will make you successful as an employee as well!