Getting Control: Back to The Workplace

Richard Citrin Ph.D., MBA
Richard Citrin Ph.D., MBA

This new phase of returning to normal will bring about significant changes to the workplace. While the changes may be significant, they will actually be a continuation of what we have been doing for the past year.

Getting more control of our lives!

In a recent study by the Steelcase Corporation of 30,000 people from across the globe, , American reported that their top 5 most important elements that should be provided in their workplace include (1) space to collaborate, (2) access to tools, (3) a place to focus, (4) ways to create team belonging and (5) workplace belonging.

One of the benefits of working from home is that it created a sense of control for all of us. We could set our time to get things done, take a walk during the day, or have a meeting with our dog sitting on our lap.  Now that we’ve gotten use to that level of control, we will want it when we return to the workplace.

Control is an important factor in building and maintaining resilience because it creates a quality of self-management that is essentially comforting in a world that is often chaotic.

As we think about control for the new workplace, here are some ways to put some control in your life

  1. Hybrid workstyles. The vast majority of people interviewed expect to have some version of hybrid. Consider how much work from home time you may want and also consider what will be in service to your organization.
  2. Office décor. I once consulted for a firm where the administrators had first floor offices with windows while the staff members were in the basement with little windows at the top of their dingy walls. I got depressed just going in there and my recommendations was to paint the walls to bring a little life into the space. Now can be a good time to redo the office look.
  3. Permission to Move: I had my first in-person meeting last week and we met outside and walked around the neighborhood for our meeting. It was refreshing and invigorating, and we came up with several good ideas sparked by getting out and moving. Even within the office, providing tools that encourage people to get up and move will help spark energy levels.

© Richard Citrin 2021

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