With SMEs, it’s leaders, not the offices that drive the company culture
Chancellor Rishi Sunak has been urging UK businesses to return to the office now that UK lockdown restrictions are getting eased. More than 15 million Britons were compelled to work from home last year and remote working practices have become a norm.
However, some employees are now threatening to change jobs if they are not allowed to continue working flexibly. What does that mean for small and medium-sized businesses though? Is switching to a completely remote working model work in all industries and businesses?
If you think of some tech giants, such as Spotify and Twitter, that does not seem to be a problem, but as a small business, you rely a lot more on effective communication practices and collaboration. Can you effectively manage and even function as a small team if all of you work remotely? How about the brainstorming sessions and your traditional chats with colleagues?
“Remote working culture” raises a lot of questions. Whilst in some roles, including digital marketing and IT, remote working could work well, if you think about sales or marketing – these are based on interactions with people. Instead of sending a message on Teams, you could just walk to your colleague’s desk and get the information you need in seconds. With Teams, you’re not guaranteed a prompt response and it does take longer to get back to you.
Here at alldayPA, we encourage the work-from-the-office model because we believe that by encouraging “live” teamwork, face-to-face conversations, and live collaboration, you can achieve more in less time. Although we do understand that the commute times can be frustrating, we do believe that by enabling flexible working hours, this pain can be eliminated. Similar to appointments or looking after your kids – by allowing you to choose your working hours, we make sure you’re still able to keep a healthy work and life balance, as well as to get everything done when you need to.
Interestingly, even though many teams argue that remote working has been a dream come true, the statistics on mental health have been proving otherwise. Human beings are social creatures and social interaction does contribute to our wellbeing more than we think. Especially when it comes to young people – live mentorship and opportunities to discuss ideas with senior colleagues are significant and invaluable.
“Small businesses create the company culture and thrive on staff interaction”, says our group CEO Reuben Singh.
What is your company’s approach to working from home?