What is a company? Is it a building, an office, a memo, a directive to point the way into the never-ending cost-cutting unknown? No, for a lot of the world the company is the people who do stuff that in some shape or form creates some value. It’s the people who move things, make things, fix things, maintain things, process things. The situation now has many of your companies (the people) no longer in the office or buildings, but working from home. In some cases, not even working, just not at work. Luckily your company still has long digital tentacles that can somewhat tether your workforce together through often meaningless conference calls and possibly poorly animated web-based meetings, (hooray for extra-long PowerPoint presentations) but this approach does have limitations. Monitoring employees in their own homes is limited, and dress codes are even harder to enforce. Some may even be working in their pajamas – a blatant wardrobe violation. The worst thing that could happen (and this is totally hypothetical) is that your company disappears. Now relax, that will never happen in real life…This is real life right?
So for the sake of debate let’s imagine that your “people” start to actually “prefer ” working from home, and worse yet – other companies realize this and start luring “your” people away to build up their own companies? How rude! Far fetched idea of course and that would probably never happen to a well-oiled machine/team like the one you’ve assembled. Of course, there might be a slight possibility that some people (who might occasionally think outside the box) – could inadvertently realize the potential they actually have and theoretically go off on their own, maybe even starting their own companies. This is so so so far fetched. Fortuitously you may have recently installed a K-Cup machine at the office, employees of course still have to provide their own K-cups, but you will provide tap water and have plenty of team spirit logo enhanced coffee mugs with your company name in the closet, I mean kitchen cupboard. They’ll never leave. They know they’ve got it made (if), I mean when they come back. I probably shouldn’t have said anything.
Well, I hope I didn’t interrupt anything important. In reality, there are a lot of great companies out there who support their people during tough times and have very flexible work options. This is one of the reasons they attract great people and in turn become great companies. To be totally honest, there are a lot of people who hate working at home. They love working in the office, and they love the company culture. They’re probably having a tough time right now – especially if they have a whole case of K-cups and no K-Cup machine.
In closing – If you still have a job now, you’re doing better than a lot who have recently lost theirs because of the “Virus”. There are a lot of companies doing a lot for their employees, and there are a lot of employees doing a lot for their companies……. and if you haven’t noticed, our government is doing a lot for everyone – employees, companies, and the public in general. All the health care workers and all the other essential workforce members are going way above the call of duty keeping life moving. This moment in time is going to change everyone in some way, some positive – some negative.
Maybe now is a good time to re-evaluate everything you do going forward. Does your company support you, and do you support your company. Is this a good working situation, or could things be improved? Now might be a good time to reflect on where you’ve been, what you’ve done, and where you might be going.