I’ve seen several posts in the last week regarding the return to a physical working location and I wanted to take some time to look at the different aspects of returning to work and what I’m hearing from peers and colleagues.
What does the workplace look like?
There are definite changes going on! Most workplaces have social distancing measures in place and this looks like the following:
- All desks are located with at least 1.5m distance between them
- There is a strict control on the number of people in the office at one time
- There are disinfection stations situated in all communal areas
- Strict protocols and testing for all employees
- Continuing work from home policies
- Restricted/ reduced client visits.
- Coloured lanyard protocols. See this post from LinkedIn.
What’s the reaction?
On my zoom calls with several of my peers, I asked them how they feel about returning to work and there was a real mix of responses (as I would expect!). Many Project Managers were remaining working from home for a large proportion of their time and were only going into the office if absolutely necessary. Several of the PMO teams that I spoke to were returning to their physical work but wearing masks/other protective equipment.
“I am really worried about going back to work. My wife has cancer and we’ve been isolating as much as possible. I would prefer to work from home but my boss has said that there are no exceptions”.
“I’m really looking forward to going back to work. I’ve been alone since March and I really miss the interactions with my colleagues”.
If you are concerned with your return to work, I’d recommend the following actions:
- Discuss with your Line Manager and what’s appropriate for your working situation
- Review any HR documentation or official documentation from your government for safe working practices.
- Look at your own working situation and make any improvements that you need to have a safe working environment
- If you are visiting clients/ returning to the office, make sure that you’re observing social distancing /safe protocols and disinfection.
Are you returning to the office? What would you be your top tips for managing this return?