Thanks to the Covid-19 pandemic that swept the globe last year, remote work became one of the new norms. Many people who now enjoy the freedom and flexibility that comes along with working from home feel that remote work was the silver lining during a hard season. Those people who have come to love working remotely may soon be finding themselves wondering what the future will hold as vaccines are now widely available and Covid herd immunity may be accomplished within the year.

According to Forbes Magazine, "By 2025, an estimated 70% of the workforce will be working remotely at least five days a month. While 2020 may be considered the year of remote work, it is just the beginning as we see the trend continuing in 2021."

I don't know how you feel about it, but that's music to my ears! But some have found remote work isolating and are starting to have WFH (Work From Home) burnout. This burnout and isolation can be remedied with co-working spaces, such as Paradigm Workhub. These remote working hubs allow you to separate your work and home life, while providing time to interact with others outside of your family and the Amazon delivery workers.
Working from home doesn't mean you can't leave the house; it means you can work from anywhere! Paradigm Workhub is an excellent option to cure those WFH blues and set up your remote office space or have in-person meetings with clients, vendors and teammates.  We have unlimited 'fancy' coffee, teas and snacks available complimentary to members and their guests.

How to ask for the Permanent Remote Work option
For those of you who aren't already working for a company that offers employees a permanent remote option, or one that will eventually require everyone to return in person, there is still hope for being or remaining a remote worker. Our number one tip is to ask your employer for a remote working option! Remember what Wayne Gretzky said, “You miss 100% of the shots you don't take.”

"But," we hear you ask, "how on Earth do I ask my employer if I can work from home when the company announced we would be returning to our offices?"

Last year, it was fairly easy to express concerns over health and safety as the reason to work from home. Now, it takes a little more finesse to get companies to consider a continuation of remote work. So here are some tips:
  1. Prove you are effective, efficient, and excellent when you work from home. If you've spent ANY time working from home this past year, put together a report (formal or informal, depending on your manager and office culture), and prove in writing that you have been as effective, if not more so, over the past year working outside your regular corporate offices. Employees often include data about how well they've done in their jobs, even in normal circumstances, when it's time for an annual review or when they want a raise. Now it's even more important to toot your own horn and share your accomplishments. You want to prove your value to your team, even when the team can't physically see you.

  2. Do some research. It can be daunting to think that you are the first person to ask about continuing remote work. Find out if anyone else in your office has already been granted permission, and then ask how they did it. Finding out you're not the only one can take some of the stress and pressure off the ask.

  3. Ask for a trial period. Sure, we feel like we've had one for an entire YEAR, but if your boss is on the fence about long-term to perm remote working, see if you can get a trial period. Sometimes employers worry more about how a person's colleagues will feel about some employees being allowed to work remotely while other return, and a trial period could offer them some wiggle room while everyone is figuring out what life will look like post-Covid.

  4. Ask for a flexible schedule. If full-time work from home isn't an option, even as a trial, ask about spending a few days a week in the office and the others working remotely. When workers know, they don't have to commute EVERY day and managers know they will still be able to lay eyes on their employees a few times a week and productivity doesn't decrease, everyone wins.

  5. Get things in writing. Once you and your supervisor have reached an agreement about your schedule and location, you should both sign a document outlining the arrangement and expectations. This will protect both parties should something come up down the road. Odds are, nothing will come up. But Gretzky or some other wise person also talked about covering yourself.
Outlook Unknown
If you ask Forbes, The LA Times, The Washington Post, and media outlets, they're all forecasting the workplace will look a lot different over the next few years. Most agree that remote work is going to be prevalent in many new and old companies.  The best thing you can do if you want to remain in a remote work situation is to ask with a plan, relevant points, and a work positive purpose. We are confident that there are many industries that will permanently develop a remote work model for their employees, and when they do, we will welcome you here at Paradigm Workhub in the Hamilton Mill area of Dacula, winner of 2020's Best of Gwinnett for co-working spaces!