The History of Working From Home
Three months since the coronavirus sent millions of Americans out of their offices to work from home, businesses are realizing that working from home is possible. Telecommuting does not have the best track record, but things are changing.
The coronavirus hit the U.S. in January, and by mid-March, office buildings went vacant, people got used to their work from home chairs and skyscrapers in cities like New York City turned off their lights. Now, three months after corporate America was sent to work from home, employers and managers are realizing that working from home is, at the very least, working.
One New York Times article shares advice from Richard Laermer, though, who reminds readers that managing a work-from-home workforce should still be taken seriously. His biggest piece of advice? Do not be an idiot.
Working from home is a great option for some, and not for others. For some people, working from home has allowed them to be more productive, to see their families or to manage their mental health. However, others admit they have been less productive.
Laermer said a few years ago, he let his employees work from home on Fridays. This did not work out well, though, as he found that he could not find people when he needed them.
“Every weekend became a three-day holiday,” he said. “I found that people work so much better when they’re all in the same physical space.”
Other groups have found that telecommuting is more harmful to a workforce and business. However, large companies like Facebook, Shopify, Zillow, Twitter and more are developing plans to let employees work remotely forever. Many are curious to see how these decisions will play out, as some businesses’ past experiences with a work-from-home workforce have proven not so positive.