It appears that this year isn’t getting any easier. After a solid few months of tentatively booking stay-cations to the coast, downloading a clunky new table-service app every time we wanted a pint and then breathing a sigh of relief as our lack-lustre skills as educators were largely lifted from our weary shoulders, we dared to dream. We dared to believe that we might – just might – be back purchasing a weekly helping of 3am cheesy chips on our way home from a light-up dancefloor on a Sunday morning just in time for Christmas. But alas, no. Life, or more specifically, global pandemics, are never quite that simple. And so, we once again find ourselves having to re-evaluate the simple structures of our day-to-day lives for the good of mankind.
But, how has this changed the way many of us work? Now, for the sake of ease, time and space, I’m predominantly talking about those of us who work in an office and do a job that allow us to be able to work remotely, and as flexibly, as we need to. So, as I sit here, icepack strapped to my ankle after taking a quarrantini turn on some narrow stairs, I wonder – has Covid-19 affected the way we now work for good? (*somewhere out there, Carrie Bradshaw shivers*).
No matter which way you look at it, flexible working and not having to travel to a fixed place of work every day has given us a lot more time – something we’ve all long been lamenting the loss of. Whether it’s utilising the time spent usually commuting with a morning run, meditation or simply getting a head start on your household chores, recent stats show that workers feel more content, and have more loyalty toward their employer, when they’re not losing time on an arduous commute. It’s also worth noting that 60% of 16-40 year olds want to make a positive impact to climate change – including working for a responsible employer. Therefore, less time spent in transit means contributing to a better environment, one thing that we can actually thank that bish covid-19 for. Let us also not forget that less time spent on the road also means more time for sleeping (yes!) and more time for wine o’clock (YAS! – ahem I mean for healthy eating and exercise).
PPP – Productivity (in your) Pants Party
A perfectly electable sounding political party if ever I heard one. But in all seriousness, the accelerated shift to mass-remote-working has proven that not only can people be trusted to work from home, but that it can also be incredibly beneficial for productivity levels. Thanks to a multitude of apps, devices and software, employees can communicate with ease and efficiency and often work harder than they would around the distractions of a busy office. Therefore, we’re now seeing a shift in how work is done – the real nitty-gritty is hammered out in the sanctuary of the home office, whereas the socialising needed for new ideas and effective collaboration is done in the actual office – as and when it is needed. And, if you desperately still need a daily fix of water-cooler gossip, simply start up Zoom happy hours again – you’ll soon snap yourself out of it.
Having to stay in our homes for most of the working week really does make you notice A LOT that you don’t like about your four walls. This has encouraged many of us to get our DIY on and really think about how best to utilise the space around us. This is great for all those odd jobs you’ve been putting off for years, such as the errant toilet that won’t flush without a helping elastic band (or two), the multiple prominent red wine stains on your ceiling, walls and curtains or the child’s sized desk you panic bought at the start of lockdown that’s now given you sciatica as a result. Or perhaps that’s just me. Anyway, accepting that we’re in this new set up for the long haul, and taking the time to re-imagine space for the better, is a great way to inspire creativity and bring a new lease of life, and comfort, to your surroundings.
Let’s get digital 😉
We may have been moving towards an economy built predominately around digital infrastructure for a while now, but 2020 has certainly played its part in accelerating this transition a lot quicker than we thought. Rather than focusing on the negatives that this pandemic has inflicted upon our physical interactions and social lives -and there are many – there are still some tech innovations that we can squeeze a little joy out of. Many businesses are having to think on their feet and get a robust digital offering in place, which opens up a whole world of opportunities for consumers, entrepreneurs and business owners alike. Staff can learn new skills, organisations can explore new markets and creatives can do what they do best and get super (yes, you guessed it) CREATIVE! So, in the (heavily paraphrased words and actions) of Olivia Newton John, let’s throw on our best active wear, keep our dodgy haircuts and get digital bebezzz.
When this blog post is eventually used by archaeologists in 3021 to assess what life was really like for the average, working Josephine Bloggs in 2020, they’ll hopefully find plenty of positives in the way that our working lives have been adapted for the greater good of our communities – and essentially – our planet as a whole. Or, more than likely, they’ll assume I was heavily dosed up on painkillers for an unsightly swollen cankle, and they wouldn’t be far wrong.
However, if you’d like any support in communicating with and developing a new digital workforce and offering, please do drop us a line today– we’d love to hear from you.