Flexibility that bends toward just one perspective in the return-to-work debate is not flexibility. I discovered this the old-fashioned way: By listening to our employees face-to-face.
During these discussions, some of our new hires communicated a lack of social connections at work, fewer new friends, which led to feelings of exclusion from the company culture. Why? Because remote work meant the office was primarily empty. This isn’t an argument around the pros and cons of returning to the office but the state of our teams’ mental wellness.
Former New York advertising executive and author Simon Sinek makes a telling observation about the value of small, everyday interactions in the office when he says: “We build trust between the meetings.”
Suppose we deny this fresh cohort of burgeoning creatives the opportunity to forge genuine human connections and mentorship in the workplace. We’d be failing as leaders and stunting the careers of our future visionaries. And the buck doesn’t stop at the entry level but applies to each new hire across every level of an organization.
At Leo Burnett, we’ve since mandated in-office work two to three days each week because there’s a big difference between doing a weekly status call…