From working remotely to working in an office

From working remotely to working in an office

What is it like to start your career remotely?
Now working remotely is no longer a requirement, everyday life will change again for many people, particularly for the younger generation. During the start of the pandemic, most workplaces required their staff to work from home, which meant that many employees were forced to adapt from traditional office work to digital and remote work. But for a lot of young people who had just started their very first job or have found employment during the pandemic, working remotely is part of everyday life and perhaps the only way of working they know. What does it mean for the younger generation to leave the remote home office and start working in the physical workplace? What are the positives and what challenges do they face?

Working from home provides increased freedom but it also reduces social connections as well the sense of belonging and collaboration. Compared to sitting at home and working undisturbed, a move to the office means both a louder working environment and more interaction with coworkers. How do you make small talk with your colleagues? It can feel a little scary and unnatural for those who are only used to working remotely. But the fact is that interaction and social connection give meaning to your work life! Even though you may feel nervous, being in the office will give you the opportunity to get to know your colleagues properly. Take the opportunity to chat with colleagues at lunch or over coffee. If working from home doesn’t provide the human interaction we all crave, then being in the office certainly does.
Lounge with woman sitting at cafe table and man sitting at bar table
Belonging to the younger generation and being new to the world of work, everyday life has consisted of working remotely from home, having digital meetings and flexible working methods. It’s a way of working that is new to the older generation. This flexible way of working and the freedom it affords has its advantages, such as getting a better balance between private life and work life. However, that’s not true for everyone. For many people, working remotely makes it more difficult to separate work from private life. They find it hard to know when to switch off. It is not unusual to eat in front of the computer or send a few emails in the evening, even though the working day is over. The positive thing about working from the office is that natural breaks occur more often, such as taking time for a walk outside at lunchtime, and when you shut down the computer at the end of the day, you know the workday really is over.

So, there are some challenges for the younger generation. But working full time from the office still comes with lots of benefits!
People chatting over coffee in the office

What can you do to make your new colleague feel included?

  • Have lunch together. Go over to their desk and ask if they want to join you for lunch. It’s a small gesture that’s sure to be appreciated!
  • Check in. Ask how they’re getting on from time to time to ensure they feel included and seen.
  • Be available. Make sure you show that you are available and willing to support them if they need anything. This is important at any time but even more so when a new employee has joined the team.
  • Show them around. Give your new colleague a tour of the office while also taking the opportunity to introduce them to everyone in person. It’s a great way to make them feel welcome.
  • Show them how the coffee machine works and where the mugs are kept. It may sound trivial but they may find it awkward to ask. Don’t let anyone go without their caffeine fix!