Back to wearing trousers again for approaching 3 days a week

So back in the office, they've got us in for 60% so three out of the five days. It feels weird not least because we currently have to wear masks all the time which is not working that well with my glasses basically looking at everything through a fog. It is nice to have multiple monitors again.

They also changed all the door locks when we were out so none of our badges work and they didn't bother to tell anyone so there were a lot of confused people prodding doors that refused to open.

I'm of two minds about it I would have prefered they allow us to work from home at least till the mask issue was not a problem it's a comfort and practicality issue. Given the nature of the work full remote work is always going to be tricky as someone has to come and poke things with sticks or kick power switches or swap out one thing for another or some such when hardware inevitably fails but still over the last year and a bit we've proven it can be mostly remote with a few people able to sort out the issues so I would have liked it if they maintained that flexibility.

Well time to get some coffee I don't have to pay for.


My company are planning something similar, though it has not been formally announced yet. Rumour has it the plan for "corporate" (all non-sales teams) are 3 out of 5 days in the office, with the days being dictated by department/team managers to create a "buzz" in the office, and the CEO not wanting the office empty on Monday and Friday as everyone takes long weekends.

For my part, I've applied to be a full-time homeworker...while it's not a sure-fire thing, IT have been told that anyone who applies for it, and meets certain performance/logistics criteria should be accepted. Given in the last year I've won a number of company-wide awards for innovation, collaboration, ownership and all the other soft-skills senior management love, and my home setup is significantly better/healthier than the office I should be OK. It would mean that I can still go into the office if I want/need to, but wouldn't have a desk, so would have to hotdesk. Not an issue, as it's a 15-minute commute if I pedal slowly, so worst case is I could come home...but it does stop them dictating my work location day-to-day. Pretty much all my meetings would be online even if I was in the office, with my main co-workers and stakeholders based away from Reading (London, Leeds, South Wales, and dev teams in Poland and India), and it's a lot easier doing video conferences in a quiet home room than in an office "buzz"...and I've been able to prove I do my best work when handed a problem and a bit of space to think.

Gill is in a similar situation with her company (with some possible complications as she has line-management responsibilities, something I've cunningly avoided), and we now have an office dog too (good motivational skills, has a tendency to sleep on the job). Have to pay for my own tea, but do get to use a kettle (which is against ofice H&S requirements).

babychaos's picture

Synchronising those three trouser days with three office days sounds fraught with peril.

At least if there is and asynchronous event you have a mask and foggy glasses to disguise your identity.

fish's picture

LOL, Fish.

We're a small company and although our investors are Big Corporate and want us to have some kind of base there is absolutely no need to go back to the office ever. In the last year we've release once a week, turned around new clients faster than ever and continued the huge rearchitecting project without dropping quality. We're outcomes based and the measurable outcome is that we don't need people in the office. The boss man would like to travel around and do conferences again because they are good places to meet new people but that doesn't apply to anyone else!

Personally, I like going to the office because it's 12 minutes walk and it's a lovely co-working space, so there are lots of other people there to talk to. It's also nicer than our house and stays quiet after the schools kick out. I won't be asking my team to come in. I think most will for a day or two as it suits them but only for the change of scene or because we go to the pub on Friday and that's nice.

When existing companies talk about hybrid working, it always sounds like some sort of compromise model that they feel they now have to offer under duress. Hybrid actually allows you to employ anyone anywhere, which should open up your catchment for good people. No longer will London suck in all the good people because that's where the good people are. The good people can be anywhere and it doesn't matter. Enterprise size companies tend to be behind where things are going, tho as there are lots of managers who can't imagine the future until their business model dies from underneath them.

Simon Wardley on twitter is great for this stuff...

brainwipe's picture

they just announced at work we're all going to have to mask up all the time again regardless of vaccination status (I was wearing mine when out and about in the office then taking it off at my desk or in the lab but I guess I can't do that anymore)

It seemed things were starting to get back to normal I had my first in person book club for the past year and half it seemed like things were sorting themselves out but it's tumbling away again rates are climbing like crazy the delta variant is all over the place all because of all those idiots who can be vaccinated but refuse to get the shot

There was a report from CNN on some rural area in I think ohio which had very low vaccination rates and there were people saying things like My son got covid and was very very sick and still has problems or my aunt nearly died from it or I lost x family member or similar but they when they asked them are you going to get the vaccine and they say No.

It's madness that the disinformation has lead to this we have the vaccine it's effective (for now) we have it in sufficient numbers to give it to everyone the government is paying for it but a theres this hardcore of people who won't take it don't trust it because of the lies they've been told.

That light at the end of the tunnel, it's a train.

Evilmatt's picture

I read an article in one of the work circulars that pointed out that to destroy a virus you need to vaccinate most people - globally. Or it will keep mutating in the vaccinated and unvaccinated people. When it does that, it gets progressively more dangerous (this was seen in SARS in Africa where there was a variant that was pretty much a snotty nose and then a couple that were lethal) until people that are unvaccinated and pretty healthy get taken out much quicker. Covid is hitting harder in Republican counties for obvious reasons.

brainwipe's picture