It is a known fact today that work from home is going to be the new normal in the coming future.
Around 40% of the total workforce is working from home currently and a majority of employees are willing to work from home in the future also. Various big companies like Microsoft, Facebook, and TATA have already declared that a big fraction of their employees are going to opt to work from home for a long time. All these reactions have confirmed that work from home culture is not going to lose its popularity anytime soon.
But on taking a closer look at the situation, the questions like ‘Is work from home more convenient than traditional office culture?’, ‘Does work from home affect the productivity of employees negatively?’ or ‘Does work from home breaches the somewhat remaining disparities of work and life completely?’ arises.
In a nutshell, the question is ‘Is remote work preferable to the traditional office?’. The answer is a clear ‘Yes’.
Some people may argue on this conclusion on various fronts like productivity, disturbances, lack of work environment, work-life balance, or management of work, but we can support the argument that remote work does work with the reference of the ‘Hawthorne Studies’.
Hawthrone’s study is a famous experiment conducted in the field of management by Elton Mayo and Fritz Roethlisberger in the 1920s. It was a study on the socio-psychological behavior of the employees and focussed on the impact of various working conditions and incentives on employee performance.
The applicability of Hawthrone studies in today’s work from home culture proves that work from home is productive.
‘The work performance of an employee is not affected by the physical environment. The social incentives and work satisfaction are the biggest factors which influence productivity most. The work environment, incentives, and good working conditions hold next to no significance on productivity.’ – Hawthorne Studies
The conclusions of Hawthrone studies are applicable in the current situation of remote work.
It provides the answer to the question of employee performance due to lacking the office ambiance. Employee productivity is bound to increase in remote settings due to increased satisfaction.
Work from home provides workers with an opportunity to work while being close to their families and friends, along with time flexibility. The long hours of a commute are also eliminated and employees can have more time at their disposal only by giving minimal efforts to managing time properly.
This increases the social as well as the work satisfaction of employees.
Though the need for managing work and life properly in a remote setting of work can not be denied to maintain productivity while considering physical and mental health.
Every change certainly requires some adjustments and so does work from home.
Some of the suggested changes for managing work and life properly are:
- Make your schedule according to your home environment
- Never bring your work to your bed or couch.
- Take frequent breaks to maintain work efficiency
- Don’t start working before office hours unless you plan on checking out early.
- Spend time with your family, make a rule of having dinner together.
- Do not pile work for weekends, they are supposed to be relaxing.
Following these steps can help you to adjust to the new normal of working from home. Accepting the change is the first step of adjustment and evolution. We may be in the biggest reset of the work culture, but we need to believe that we can make the work from home ‘work for us’.
But it needs to be understood that even if you are facing problems, it is just a part of the process. It will all start making sense eventually. Remember that you are not alone in this. Make the best of the opportunities that come with the remote work. After all, spending time with our loved ones at the comfort of our home is what we always wanted.