As we move toward the projected peaks for the virus over the next 3-4 weeks, have you begun to discuss what your ramp up looks like on the other side of this?
I would love to hear comments from Managers, Directors, and above, regarding if they feel they are getting better or worse productivity from team members.
Do your developers have the discipline to work at home?
When you contact them are their dogs barking or are they interrupting a meeting to answer the door. (I find under emergency situations, this is ok, but I don't like to operate that way going forward.)
Are meetings starting on time (zoom etc.,_) or are there constantly lost time occurring?
In your role, is it taking more elapsed time to get things done due to this?
Have you changed the rules to work '9-5' to be project based?
Research shows that people like to work at home (no commute, no boss around), but as a manager, are you getting the productivity you want, and is it better or worse then when they are working down the hall?
Since I am not long doing a corporate job, I wont be able to answer the specific question here. But it won’t stop me from making a couple of observations. One is that people should stop trying to equate remote workforce productivity and value to that of the in-office experiences. They don’t line up and people should not try to make them balance. Quite honestly, what metrics do people have today to truly know or benchmark productivity from in-office staff? I bet most managers only use their own “feels good – looks good – must be good” validation. The real lost opportunities with a large remote workforce are for the synergies, ideation, joy, and tribal sharing that can only come when people are working together along side each other. I would equate the remote workforce as a two-dimensional experience and the in-office workforce as 3D. Yes, they can look, sound, and can feel very similar. But in truth they are totally different experiences!
Productivity has stayed pretty stable
Small changes such as
instead of drive by, folks now call you on Teams.
We still use a ton of email, but we are trying to create small working groups and driving the conversation into Teams to lower that email volume.
We moved 75% of our company to work remote in one week (about 150 employees) and for the most part I believe it has been working well. It helped that the entire IT dept and some small business teams were already using MS Teams.
I think going forward this opens up the conversation with folks about working from home outside of more than IT and proves that as an organization we can embrace it.
My company was already remote friendly. I see more people doing it more frequently. One member of my team doesn't want to come back to work. For me (who does not work remotely), it's been a learning experience. I better understand working remotely now and the challenges (to feel included). I find my self working harder and having a harder time turning work off.
We are expanding our processes and collaboration to remove the "dumb" stuff that gets done because it is just the corporate ritual (we've always done it this way).
Our organization typically has not been one to embrace remote work except on a case by case basis and for limited times. However with this pandemic, we quickly went to around 100 people working remotely.
I don't believe at this time that remote work will become part of our culture, but I do see us enabling more people to have that ability should the need arise again. I see more of a culture shift in the way we are doing business and doing more electronic in nature with less need for paper and less face to face interaction. As soon as it is "safe" to be back in the office together, I think we go back to our cubicles.
As an executive leader, I feel my team within the IT division is working at similar levels of productivity as IT is used to working both on-site and remote. What I have been impressed with is the other employees in the organization taking full advantage of all of the technologies we have implemented in the last three years. Adoption is sky high and I attribute that directly to having to work remote. It has been good that the rest of the organization is able to have an "A-ha" moment of why we did what we did with our digital transformation. The challenge now is trying to get everyone back into the office as they have learned they can be just as productive working remote as working in an office. The primary goal of working in the office is the face time with other humans.
I have team members who will want to work remotely more after this passes. I do not see them wanting to be full time remote as the ideation is really important. I'm ok with focused remote work- people can get more done but we are humans and humans need real interaction with other humans. Technology will not replace biology. :) My introverts are loving it, but they too see the need for in person team meetings and conversations. My extroverts are hating being locked up in a box- this screen is not the same as sitting with people chatting. We are super fortunate- our teams are killing it- productivity is through the roof for our major focus points that we have to get done virus or not. I am so grateful to be part of this family. We will go back to in-person with our clients as it is important in creating a better connection. You can have a relationship grow remotely but true strength does warrant in person discussions. Once we say come on back- the vast majority will run back to the office, some will not and we feel that is ok. Our company is flexible and it's important to meet people where they are so the can be the best version of themselves.
We are currently working on the restart on multiple levels. We will be publishing cleaning guidelines for our office staff and our field staff. We will not have every office worker return to the office and when we get the all clear, we'll stagger the folks returning. We will socially distance folks in cubicles (to avoid neighbors). We have been actively searching for any PPE we can find, especially for the locations that can't work from home (yards, terminals). We will put up posters with safety reminders (we do this but for injuries, not cleaning and distancing). And yes, remote work is and will remain part of our culture. IT has done this for some time. Other groups are realizing they can do their jobs remotely (and effectively). One of the Directors even said he has maintained the same level of work with fewer people. Some folks were laid off during this downturn but the work is still getting done.