For years, companies have been reticent to allow staff to WFH (work from home) because they believed the nature of their work, would make it impossible.
82 days later and the WFH exercise has been so successful that a client mentioned, this week, that their productivity has risen 25% since lockdown.
A 25% increase in productivity sets alarm bells off in my head, as people have been navigating the boundary, or lack thereof, between work and home. Issues brought to coaching include increased stress, not being able to switch off, not having enough personal time.
So whilst the exercise is proving ‘positive’ for many companies, for many people, it may have failed.
Human beings are creatures of habit. Just note how quickly we have changed our behaviour.
An early rise and 1 hour commute, is now a later rise, breakfast and an early start. That two hour commute every day, is now an additional week at the office,…every month. And, with little other entertainment e.g. meeting friends, going to the gym, or to the theatre; it’s no wonder that after only 82-days of WFH, that people are feeling frazzled.
Behaviour can change in as little as three months. People just need to be given the tools to change (in this case, broadband, computer equipment that communicates to company systems, and a place to sit comfortably and quietly). But, people also need reassurance that what they are doing, and how they are doing it, is right.
The Western world has had little to no experience dealing with change of this calibre, so it’s no surprise that we’ve given people the tools but we haven’t told them how to use them.
Self-belief is vital to success. If we gave an overweight person, food and a diet plan, but we omitted to tell them the quantities that they should eat, their weight may stay the same; in fact their weight may increase and they would become despondent.
I’ll leave you with these thoughts:
How healthy will your workforce be (mentally and physically) when Covid-19 is a thing of the past?
Have you ensured that your staff has the tools to WFH, given them instructions of how to use them and reassured them that they are on the right track?
I am happy to discuss this topic and share findings of my masters thesis (part of the MSc. Coaching and Behavioural Change, 2018), titled ‘Changing behaviour in 3-months’.