Updated: May 21, 2021
Get up, get dressed and, stay home while you work…but only for today. It’s Work from Home Day 2021! So yes, you get to avoid the peak-period traffic jams and rush-hour commuting. In the midst of the current COVID-19 pandemic and public health restrictions on physical movement and activities, it seems like a pragmatic option. Yet, today is but a microcosm of what a future work-world might envision.
Mind you, work from home is not remote work, which is work done full-time and exclusively from your private residence. That is not to say that work from home cannot eventually become remote work if the proper administrative framework is implemented.
As an employee or employer, what do you imagine that to mean? More quality time for yourself? Or you and your loved ones? Maybe, a chance to achieve the long-elusive balance between work and family life?
Conversely, do you dread the thought of being long-term physically-distanced from your work colleagues? Or, having the demarcation line between the respective work and home environments blurred, to the extent that the workplace is an extension of your home, and vice versa?
Or yet still, would you prefer a hybrid structure that enables you to enjoy the best of both worlds through mutual discussion and arrangement? Perhaps, one that maintains the administrative integrity of the workplace, while enabling stronger support of a sustained presence at home?
Arguably, the world is becoming vastly digitalized. Many transactions ranging from financial to government can be conducted virtually- whether from a PC, a desktop, or, even a Smartphone. Many of us appreciate the convenience that also corresponds with safety and comfort. Yet, the thrust toward a digitalized world means that we must all be connected. Unfortunately, outside of our traditional work setting, many of us do not have an Internet-ready device, and also reliable Internet access.
Furthermore, many workers, and even those quickly approaching that demographic, have been conditioned to believe in the conventional way of work so much, that even the thought of trying another concept is both daunting and non-negotiable. They are concerned about the possibility of reduced productivity, accountability, and transparency in performing our work-related duties from home, and, the personal and emotional cost attached to tailoring their homes to suit the demands of the workplace. Nevertheless, it cannot be denied that the current pandemic has revealed that the workplace landscape has been permanently altered, and the global community needs to adapt.
Therefore, in making an informed decision about whether to work from home, it is imperative to carefully assess your overall make-up. How physically, emotionally, mentally, and financially prepared are you to work from home? Do your existing work responsibilities make it feasible to work from home? Be brutally honest with yourself and not opt to ride with the majority-tide.
Working from home can be an empowering option in our professional lives. What would be your preference, and why?
Keywords: LinkedIn Caribbean, Work from Home, flexibility, accountability, empowerment
Created by Joy Dillon and Kambe Lovelace.