I’ve worked on some amazing teams and had phenomenal colleagues.
My early days of working will always remind me of the movie, Boiler Room, due to its bullpen-like set up and activity constantly on the go. It was fun, I learned a ton, even met one of my closest friends who is now my son’s godfather. But that environment ultimately just wasn’t for me.
I then went to work on a small team, everyone was a top performer. It was my first taste of being managed remotely as my manager sat across the pond in the UK. She was phenomenal, and I learned a ton from her about the corporate world and much of which I still implement today. I grew a lot professionally which I will always be thankful for that opportunity. But the team dissolved, and things changed, and I just had to move on.
I joined a much smaller organization, one that was dysfunctional at best. People were fantastic to your face, but you never wanted to turn your back. It was self-preservation and it was one of the more challenging environments I have experienced.
This led to me working pretty much full-time from home. Conference calls became your friend, your phone was your lifeline to your team and developing relationships.
Then everyone, everywhere was pretty much forced to work from home and that dynamic shifted. Video. Video saved those of us searching for a team while working from home. I began to feel like a part of something, a part of a team and fostering those relationships.
Video has brought us together, a newer work technology partnered with a younger generation that is completely comfortable sitting anywhere and building meaningful relationships. It has a rejuvenation effect on one’s career, or on one’s work location/situation.
A younger generation has opened my mind and my ability to re-develop meaningful work relationships and friendships. The ability to share work topics yet have to comfort to share personal information and insights.
The coffee-shop days of needing to work there in order to have human contact have evolved to being able to sit in my house and connect.
And now, some of the “old school” leaders are pushing companies to return to in-office work. This has a big brother overwatch feel to it because it does not appear to be a productivity question. I do understand certain positions must be in an office, but if you have been productive and valued over the past 2 years then why the demand? Is it due to real estate? Trust? Control?
I find that I most appreciate teams, managers, and partners that bring that level of trust to their team to produce at the highest levels.
How has your work changed, if at all? Are you being driven back into the office either willingly or unwillingly? Share your thoughts!