Bengaluru: WeWork, the global network of collaborative spaces, undertook a year-end survey to determine if people have forgotten the office hustle and been nostalgic about their workspaces and colleagues. Be it the barrage of virtual meetings and conference calls or the frequent network failures we face daily, each of us has undoubtedly missed our workspaces’ comfort and convenience several times during the year. To get a more in-depth understanding, WeWork’s year-end survey on What people missed most about their workspace reached out to respondents across levels and industries including IT, Internet, Hospitality, Human Resource, and more the three major metros – Bengaluru, Mumbai and Delhi. The survey got an overwhelming response with 3000+ participants and 180k+ total impressions from 10 posts on Twitter and LinkedIn. People do miss going to work.
Below are some of the key insights gathered from the survey that reveal what people missed most about offices and expected trends of how workplaces in 2021 will look like:
- “Beer is always the ANSWER! Hence, keep calm and drink beer”
When asked, “What is the one thing that everyone misses most about the office but won’t say out loud”, a majority of the respondents happily agreed that they miss the office parties – for the free beer! Among the top responses, about 33% (LinkedIn) of the respondents also said that a break from family drama is sorely missed, and around 23% (Twitter), they miss that one glimpse of their office crush when away. Small but significant as matters of the heart take precedence always!
- “I want my chair back!”
We all know how particular we are about our office chairs. While working from home has led us to work from beds, sofas, bean bags or even floors! A majority of the respondents in the survey revealed that they want to go back to work because they want their office chairs back! Also, the satisfaction of uninstalling zoom and prepping for a one on one meeting is what respondents look forward to the most upon their return.
- “How can I help you, boss :)”
When asked, “What would you do when your boss starts looking for you when you’re just about to leave?”. About 50% of respondents on both Twitter and LinkedIn happily (or not) will ask if they can in any way help with the work, even if it means staying back and changing plans. Phew!
- “If not now, then when? Time to change your manager!”
While we all agree that change is necessary and on asking about the one thing that all our respondents would wish to change when going back to work, about 40% of the respondents on LinkedIn want to change their managers, hmmm! While the Twitter audience appreciates a simple change in the policy of wearing formals as they would like to dress casually. After a year spent in pyjamas, it’s to be expected!
- “Back to WORK, back to LIFE”
About 60% of the respondents rated the appeal of ‘lack of company and reduced personal connect with colleagues’, distractions during work – like children, visitors, housework and ‘monotony of being in the same environment’ as the top reasons to go back to work. Humans are, after all, social animals and do crave the company of others.
- “Stuck in traffic, no more an excuse!”
We all know that the worst feeling is being stuck in traffic for hours. 76% of the post-pandemic world don’t wish to travel more than 5 km to get to work. Workspaces near homes and flexible workplaces are the need of the hour.
- “Safety and Hygiene is non-negotiable.”
65% of the respondents said that strict social distancing norms had a very high likelihood to increase their willingness to go back to the office. An extra cautious and apparent behaviour toward safety and hygiene is what every respondent in the post-pandemic world will be observing indulging in.
- “Office Lunch Time is Bae”
While we all have realised the importance of lunch breaks, when asked about 33% of the audience responded that a typical lunch while working is with colleagues and a side of office gossip. However, if that’s what one doesn’t choose to indulge in, street food treats during and post work come to the rescue as well.
- “Miss You Everyday, Dearest Chaiwala Bhaiya”
More than 40% of the entire audience agrees that the one thing they missed about the office but would rather not say it out loud is that they missed their tapri wali chai. So, no matter how fancy that Starbucks coffee looks, Chai will always be the love of our lives!
- “Spaced Out Meetings? What’s That?”
More than 35% of the audience agrees that they were entirely focused whenever they were in a physical meeting and even asked the right questions. They were super conscious of not spacing out, which is not the same now online!
Speaking about the survey findings, Vineet Singh, Head of Brand & Marketing at WeWork India said, “The year 2020 was a massive change not just for the business but for the entire human race globally. It changed how we worked and lived, blurring lines and sense of time. As 2020 was drawing to a close, we decided to lighten up the mood a little and hence we planned this year-end survey to find out in all honesty if and what people miss about their offices. And the survey did reveal some really fascinating and quirky insights. Respondents opened their hearts and their responses have also helped us identify their exact needs from workplaces in 2021. We observed enthusiasm to go back to work in a safe and healthy environment. At WeWork necessary safety and hygiene, measures were implemented during the beginning of the pandemic phase and are being strictly followed daily across all our locations. We have revised our seating layouts, making social distancing mandatory and are taking all necessary precautionary measures in all our spaces. We are fully prepared to serve our members in the safest manner on their return and hope 2021 will reunite us all with our favourite colleagues, beer at office parties and our office chairs,”