I was reminded of this old joke this week when a potential member called me asking about workplace options. She has been working from home since March 2019 and said she was going stir-crazy being in the same place with the same people 24/7.
“I want to look forward to coming home again, to actually miss it when I’m away”, she said.
Who can relate?
As wonderful as it has been to be home-based — buh-bye horrid commute! — and to be close by if our children or other family members needed us, most of us are really tired of rigging up our homes, our sanctuaries into a professional full-time workplace.
As we roll into the ninth month of the pandemic with a huge surge in cases causing officials to enact more restrictive protocols, remote work or work from home (WFH) is still the way to work for the near future. Who would have thought, way back in March, that we would still be in the trenches of this crisis? I am not alone in assuming that we would have been well into the transition phase of the new workplace.
We will get through this, of course—what is our alternative really? Looking for a silver lining, I had to dig deep, and am realizing that we, as a society, now have more time to plan for the post-COVID workplace. We can make a more considered plan, not just a knee-jerk reaction, to a new way of working.
The Early Days
In March, with the suddenness of the lockdown, most companies were caught off-guard and scrambled to provide their employees with guidelines and equipment to work from their own homes. Predictably, there were varying degrees of success, with those companies who were already allowing WFH or Work From Anywhere (WFA) having a head start over those companies who had been slowly considering or actively resisting anything other than the traditional workplace.
Over the ensuing months, employers figured out ways to help their employees stay productive at home—buying ergonomic furniture and paying for WIFI boosting devices, just two of the things I heard about from potential members. I have also fielded many calls from employers who are preparing for the post-COVID world by changing their long-time corporate real estate strategy of having all employees work in one main office in an urban center to a “hub and spoke” strategy.
A Middle Ground
One of the latest ideas to emerge is the Work Near Home (WNH) workplace. Instead of the two options, corporate office vs. home office, both with serious negative aspects, a third option is rapidly gaining traction. The WNH workplace is a space in a flexible workspace center that is NEAR your home, so you get the benefits of working from home — no commute, flexibility to provide family care— without the pesky detriments of poor WIFI, inadequate furniture and equipment, and family disruptions.
At my flexible workspace center in Walnut Creek, CA, we have a wide array of options to suit any needs, and can scale up or down quickly as your needs change. Here is a list of our most popular products:
Private office memberships, fully-furnished with lots of amenities;
Virtual office plans that allow you to choose from a variety of different workspaces—carrels, cafe tables, and comfy soft seating with desk top attached;
Business Address Plan for a professional address for all your letters, packages and documents AND gives you 50% off meeting room space so you pay as you go.
Most of our plans include 24/7 access with your own key fob so you can work when it is convenient for you.
The End is In Sight
So, when we get to the other side of this pandemic, and there is a light at the end of the tunnel, look forward to a workplace that is close to your home. A better work/life balance is possible.
About Office Evolution Concord
At Office Evolution Concord, we provide virtual office, coworking, and private office solutions at our shared office center. We offer meeting rooms, offices for rent, hot desking in a shared workspace coworking lounge, a shared reception, a business address, and virtual receptionist services. We have many options and price points, and all terms are flexible. Plus, you become part of a community of like-minded professionals.
Whether you live in Concord, Pleasant Hill, Clayton, Antioch, Pittsburg, Brentwood, and other communities nearby in Contra Costa County, choosing Office Evolution Concord will help you be more professional, productive, and profitable.
Written by: Dawn Lopshire
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Office Evolution has more than 70 locations open, 140 units sold in markets across the country and is poised for further growth as the demand for affordable and safe, workspace close-to-home continues to rise.