Work Sucks. Everyone knows it.
Show up at 8 or 8:30 or 9:00 and make coffee and talk about last night’s reality TV then settle in to check email, work on some early tasks, then shuffle into the first pointless meeting of the day. Check your phone a million times. Wish it was over. Go to lunch, complain about work, hurry back for the 1 p.m. meeting some jerk scheduled. Try to stay awake. Get some progress on a few projects, answer a couple of inane questions. Have a cupcake around 3 p.m. for someone’s birthday or retirement or work anniversary. Wish you could suck the helium out of the balloons. Go back to your desk, realize you have two more hours until leaving time. Use every bit of self discipline you have to not sigh out loud. Pack up at 4:55 or 5:25 or 5:55 and hit the parking lot right on time to wait in line to exit and head home. Sit in traffic. Realize you’ll do it all again tomorrow. Use the last bit of self discipline you have to not cry.
Now you’re working from home and instead of finding someone has left less than a cup of coffee in the pot on the burner and you’ll have to make a new pot before you drink any, you’re guzzling the $9 bag of Starbucks brewed exactly as strong as you like it.
For some, the move to working from home was a welcome transition to cozy pants, music piping through home stereo speakers and not your earbuds, and the choice to commute to the couch, the kitchen table or to just stay in bed, putting the laptop on your actual lap.
You may not have even realized how bad work sucked until you were sent home. Comparing and contrasting the before-and-after experience, you might be feeling dread at having to go back. The pandemic may have released you from all the distractions that kept you from simply doing your job. It may have helped you relax into the work you needed to do. Made you more creative, more productive, and cozier.
How can you make the case to stay home as your state re-opens and your boss suggests returning to the office?
Consider the performance indicators your boss used before he sent you home. What did he expect you to be doing? What projects have you completed? Begin an inventory of the actual work you have been able to do. Consider the energy you have been able to dedicate to the job without the meetings, distractions, and requirements (cupcakes!) of office life.
Your boss wants work from you. Not just time. Itemize your productivity in the before-and-after and make the case: Working from home has been good for you. That’s good for the company.
Need some help? Adopt Redesign Work to 1) manage remote employees, 2) organize your workforce into productive units, 3) infuse autonomy and accountability into your workforce.
Learn more by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org