CHAPTER 8Virtual and Hybrid Work

The way we work now—where we are, what tech we use, how we communicate with each other—has completely changed for many people since the pandemic started. The whole world has telescoped, and everything is topsy‐turvy. Our definition of work, the workplace, the workforce, and the worker are all in flux.

Some aspects of remote work are challenging, and we'll explore those challenges in this chapter. But for the leaders reading this: Don't try to go back to “work as usual.” There is no old way of working.

As Decoded founder Kathryn Parsons told me, “The cat has been let out of the bag. It's not realistic to expect people to come ‘back to work’ exactly as they did before. People have embraced a new way of living and working. And the best talent are going to join companies that reflect how they want to work.” In other words, if you're doubling down on commuting into the office for a 9–5 workday every day, you might want to reconsider what your workforce really wants and needs.

Overall, Harvard Business School professor Ashley Whillans thinks the pandemic will make a long‐term positive effect on the workplace. “Our younger generations are pushing on workplaces to care about aspects of our personal lives that workplaces were never set up or designed to do. We used to work in factories, produce a certain number of widgets each day, and go home. Workplaces look nothing like that now, and they're going to continue to look nothing like that in the future. ...

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