Collaboration. Culture. Fancy new open offices. The occasional free sandwich. Firms continue their desperate attempts to lure people back into the office, not too aggressively though as they know if you push people too hard on remote work they will leave.
To any firm leaders plotting your next “how can we get people back into the office” campaign who may be reading this, pay attention.
I’m not sure how the message could be any clearer.
According to the NYT article the above photo is lifted from, suburban office parks like this have been dead for some time:
Suburban offices built between the 1960s and 1980s were already struggling before the pandemic, with their aging mechanical systems and the changing tastes of millennials. A younger generation wants more urban offices, real estate developers say, [press X to doubt] or at least suburban offices that feel more urban, with sidewalks and somewhere different to eat lunch every day. But now layer on remote work, “and this might finish it off,” landscape architecture scholar Louise Mozingo said.
The verdict is in: no one wants to work at your stupid, ugly office park. Next.
This is all about control. The dynamic between employer and employee is all out of whack right now. Employers want employees to come back into the office so that they can keep an eye on them. It doesn’t matter that companies are saving tons of money by their employees working from home. They think that their employees are slacking off, because they aren’t being watched. They’re probably right about that, but that’s a different topic.
This will all change when we finally have a recession, which can’t come fast enough for many employers.
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