Hybrid working is a “recipe for disaster”

Not everyone is a fan of the hybrid working model. One of the only vocal critics of this style of work is GitLab maintainer Darren Murph. He argues it’s a “recipe for disaster”.

Murph is highly skeptical of Big Tech and other companies that claim hybrid is the “best of both worlds.” As an early leader of the remote work revolution, Murph points out that business leaders are unaware of the chaos and dysfunction that accompanies a two-tier work environment.

The remote chief officer gives a dire warning, predicting that offices will become epicenters of power and not everyone will have fair contact time with leadership. Hybrid working will stifle transparency and make team members feel separated from cooler conversations. You will feel like a second-class citizen when you are at home, while others are in the office.

Choose in office or remote – you can’t have both

Instead of going hybrid, Murph recommends organizations commit either fully to the office, which he’s not a fan of, or to a remote program. He argues that in the current phase, characterized by a dynamic labor market with more than 11 million positions available and a record 4.5 million people leaving their jobs last month, there are more choices for researchers. employment.

This may lead some companies to capitalize on this trend by deploying a remote option to attract, recruit and retain workers. The logic makes sense; However, if the company doesn’t have a solid plan to handle a combination of remote and in-office work, it could lead to significant challenges down the road. There can be unintended consequences, such as the alienation of office workers and telecommuters, which will eventually cause people to leave for other opportunities.

The shock and FOMO between telecommuters and office workers

There is an inherent imbalance between those who go to an office and the people at home. It starts in the morning. A distant person wakes up and doesn’t have to face an hour or more of commuting. They will be working while office staff are still stuck on crowded trains, buses and highways. The wear and tear on their mental and physical health has repercussions.

Meanwhile, people at home can be seen as an afterthought. Managers will forget to get them on critical Zoom calls. They will miss impromptu and chance encounters in the hallway, cafeteria and elevators. As the top brass eliminate a select group of office workers to celebrate a big win, the homeworkers, who may have been instrumental in the success, are left out of the party.

There will be a fear of missing out (FOMO) for both groups. Those at home will fear becoming second-class citizens, excluded from important conversations and decision-making. They will start resenting people in the office who gain favor, due to proximity bias. It’s easier to hand off an important task or a new client to the person in the next office, rather than tracking down a remote worker. If the incumbent team receives higher salaries, bonuses and promotions due to face-to-face time rather than performance, it will lead to a conflicted division of the workforce.

You can expect the office team to grow increasingly resentful of people working comfortably from home, as they wait outside in freezing weather for a train that’s an hour late. It is reasonable to believe that they will also start to feel aggrieved. While remote people attend milestone events, such as school plays, sports, dance classes, and bonding times, office teams miss out on those unique moments.

The benefits of remote work

Murph, an avowed champion of remote work, says 25% of all professional jobs in the United States will be remote by the end of this year. Dubbed the “remote work oracle” by CNBC, Murph highlights the success of his company, GitLab, a DevOps platform, which has 1,200 employees in more than 65 countries. GitLab has been fully remote since its inception.

He says remote work requires an intentional decision to create, cultivate and manage a distributed workforce. It takes a tremendous amount of thought, planning, attention to detail and execution. Murph says running a remote business is all about trusting your employees. It also calls for communication, feedback, strong leadership, and a company-wide sense of shared mission and goals.

Murph believes companies that smartly adopt and manage a remote workforce will succeed and thrive. Because of the lifestyle, fairness, level playing field, and appreciation of freedom and autonomy, remote businesses are likely to attract some of the best and brightest talent. It will make the business bigger, stronger and better. They will siphon off A players from companies that have ordered their staff back to the office full time. Angered by the lack of choice, these organizations will suffer from a steady stream of attrition. The result is that the best talents will leave to competitors.

Remote work is life changing

Murph hopes his remote work movement will leave a legacy of change, allowing more people and businesses to join this trend. From direct experience of himself, his company’s employees, and the places he’s advised, remote work has been better for mental health, emotional well-being, and better quality of work and life. life.

He advocates that by working from anywhere, you can better appreciate your family, friends and neighbors. Without time-consuming trips, you can enjoy your hobbies, exercise and take better care of yourself.

The remote work leader points out that remote work will have created other positive changes in the world. For example, Americans who live in rural communities far from Silicon Valley and Wall Street will now have more options. Likewise, people around the world no longer have to abandon their family and loved ones to find a great, well-paying job based in a different city, state, or country. Small communities that continually lose young people, due to lack of job opportunities, can now stay and help revitalize small towns across the United States. The remote model, according to Murph, is one of the best ways to provide a level playing field for your career. .

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