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Continued from Part 1…
I did a casual poll of my friends and most of them have begun to return to the workplace during alternate weeks or a few days every week. Some welcome it because they concentrate better in the office. Others like to have a clear knock-off time since working from home often means working late into the night. But for many working parents, working from home allows them more flexibility in planning their day and completing their tasks.
A friend lamented that she will have to wake up at 5:45 a.m. again to get her daughter ready for school before getting herself ready for work, and then commuting an hour to get to the office. She was used to this before COVID turned our lives topsy-turvy. But having worked from home for more than a year, it is difficult to go back to a less desirable option.
Flexible work arrangements would definitely be welcome. But according to media reports and anecdotes from several friends, most employers prefer to go back to the old way of working. Some managers find it difficult to keep track of what everyone is doing without actually seeing them at their desks. I wonder if this speaks more about their management style than their staff’s productivity. If COVID has shown us that we can indeed transform the workplace when the situation calls for it, should we not take this opportunity to make the good changes last? (Tan Ying Zhen)
This article was provided by The Japan Times Alpha.