Returning to the office? My opinion on the latest Government announcement

On the 22nd February 2021, Boris Johnson announced the government’s roadmap to easing lockdown restrictions in England. Similar to many other businesses, this led our team to have a discussion about home/office working.

 

For those of you who may not have read my previous blog posts, I was hired in the middle of the pandemic in 2020 and therefore have mainly worked from home.

 

When I heard Boris’ announcement, it made me question how my work environment would change. Would I be going back to the office anytime soon? When would that be? This also got me thinking, how many other homeworkers would be feeling the same?

man at home looking at computer screen



Therefore, this blog post is designed to provide my opinion on the latest announcement, from an employee’s perspective. If you would like to read more about this topic but from a business owner’s perspective, Guy Osmond has written a section in his latest eBulletin publication.

 

For me, the latest Government announcement provided me with hope and optimism. It’s been far too easy to slip into a negative mindset over the past few months and for once I felt excited about the future.

 

It took me a while to enjoy working from home and I think that was due to not having a solid routine before and after work (not just during). But since then, I have created a healthy routine for myself (I will write a separate blog post about this in the future), which has allowed me to truly recognise the benefits of homeworking. Now that I have settled in to life as a homeworker, the thought of going back to the office is a little unnerving. It has almost been a year since this pandemic began and during that course of time, some of us have finally become comfortable with working from home.

 

woman hunched over laptop looking worried
I’ve enjoyed waking up early but not having to worry about commuting to work. I’ve enjoyed going for a walk in my local park at lunchtime. I’ve enjoyed eating freshly cooked food for lunch. But I’ve also missed the routine I had when I worked from the office. I miss driving. I miss feeling like I have accomplished something as I reverse my car onto the driveway after a long day. I miss the social aspect.

 

The key point that I have learnt over the past 12 months all comes down to adaptation. Despite the fact that many of us do not voluntarily welcome change, it’s fair to say that things have changed a lot recently and whether we like it or not, we have been able to adapt to the situation. So, when I think about what the future holds for my lifestyle in terms of work, yes, it’s daunting but we have learnt to adapt once this year and we can do it again.

 

What’s more, if we have learnt to be flexible with our work in a situation like this, then so has your company. I believe that flexible working will remain a significant topic that businesses will have to bear in mind and as an employee, this should give you some reassurance. Your company should recognise that reverting to office working may need to be a gradual process for some, and I don’t think there is anything wrong with highlighting that to your line manager, if/when the topic arises.

light up sign that says 'you got this'




If you are having concerns about your work life, talk to someone about it. A friend, a family member or a colleague – everyone has struggled this year, let’s support each other.

 

Happy working (wherever that may be!)

Alice


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