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Back to Office, Work from Home or Hybrid- What's Working?

What’s Next for the Workspace?

Back to the office, work from home or Hybrid- What's Working?

- By Balaji Pasumarthy

Work From Home to Hybrid Office

The Pandemic has forced all of us to take a fresh look at where we work. By default, work mostly happened in the office. Now that more than a year has passed, forcing most of us to work from home, it's time to take stock for the future and ask the question, “Which is the more effective work space?''

Dropbox, in an internal survey found that nearly 90% of the workforce are more focused at home and just as engaged as before (in the office), and do not want to go back to a rigid 5-day office workweek. At the same time, in the blog they share, “workers also say company culture suffers from no in-person interaction, risk of miscommunication is higher, and it’s harder to start new projects with multiple collaborators. There are many things people miss about the office.”

Apple has always been a proponent of working from the office, no wonder Steve Jobs himself commissioned the Apple Park, an office complex spread over 176 acres. However, when recently Tim Cook shared a note with employees to return to work on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, there was pushback from some employees (Link) making the case, “the future of work will be significantly more location and timezone flexible”, and they claim, “mandatory out-of-office work enabled tearing down cross-functional communication barriers to delivering even better results. 

Overall it seems that despite few downsides, there are many positives to working from home in terms of increased productivity, better work-life balance and saving of commute times.

Interestingly even before the pandemic, a paper published in the Harvard Business Review showed that virtual workers are twice as engaged as their office-bound colleagues if they feel that they are part of a team. (see blog regarding this paper), so it looks like the issue is not just a simple office or no office.

Hybrid Office Space = New Trend

In Golden Square, we believe there are two key aspects of getting work done. Focus and Collaboration. “Focus” when one needs to do work oneself. “Collaboration” when one needs to interact and share information with others. Let's take a closer look at each of these factors:

Need for Focus: Tasks such as writing a piece of code, a business proposal, creative work, ideating, creating a strategy. It is work that needs contemplation and attention to detail. Broadly speaking, what is required is a quiet place to work in, at a time most conducive to one's biorhythm. I, for one, have my post productive time happening early in the morning. There’s no disturbance and the mind is fresh. This of course could be different for each person. Home may or may not be the distraction-free space you need for focused work.

Collaboration: This could be as simple as updating each other or having involved and deep discussions. Certain tasks might also require two or more people to constantly be in touch with each other and collaborate in real-time throughout the day. I’m thinking of a designer and a software developer working together on an agile project. Other times, the “collaboration” could be meetings with clients or vendors.

A lot of collaboration can happen online, on zoom and in chats. Updates etc can easily take place in this manner. However, in-person meetings have a certain quality, in terms of forming connections and enhancing communication that is still difficult online. 

As an organization, one needs to look at the needs of each person and team and figure out which workspace solution is most suited:

1) Fully Virtual. When there is very little need for collaboration.

2) Fully Work from Office. When there is a lot of collaboration needed.

3) Hybrid: Work from home, use the office for meetings and for even for distraction-free work(if home is not conducive). Get both focus and collaboration.

It is quite likely that in your team, in the future, you will have people using different options based on their unique work needs and preferences.

This causes some problems in planning for an office space. However, this is also where Golden Square comes in as the ideal solution. Since we provide Offices in a flexible manner without any lock-ins, based on your unique needs you could take the required office space and office support on a per-use basis- either hourly, monthly or dedicated.

Consider the following Scenarios:

  1. Your team works from home and uses Golden Square for weekly meetings. They have access to fully equipped conference rooms and meeting rooms, with all the infrastructure required for productive meetings. They also have access to office cabins for distraction-free work or important zoom calls, available across 6+ locations in Bangalore (Vittal Mallya Road, Double Road, Koramangala, JP Nagar, Jayanagar, Hebbal).

  1. Your critical team which cannot make do without an office, like tech support who need servers can work from Golden Square dedicated office spaces. The rest of your team can work from home while making use of meeting rooms as and when they need, by the hour.

  1. Set up a dedicated branded office in Golden Square with meeting rooms and cabins. The spaces can be customized, branded and equipped as per your own company colours. Your team members can use it as and when required. 

Since Golden Square offices are available by the hour or on a dedicated basis, one can use spaces in any of the 6 locations across Bangalore. You can count on custom-made office solutions from Golden Square that make you more productive and effective and cut down unnecessary costs.

The other unique aspect of Golden Square is the Acceleration Desk- the back office support team that you can use to automate tasks, get office assistant support and even have the team handle some of your business processes.

When you think of Hybrid Offices, think of Golden Square and get the best of both worlds.
Here learn more about Hybrid Offices from Golden Square: Contact Surekha to learn more: +91 99003 99317 |


Emma Jasmine said…
Good Post.
Born to Win said…
Excellent insights.
Points to ponder about.
GOLDEN square is a good hybrid mid point
Unknown said…
Finally some clarity going forward!

Thanks and mostly agree with the suggested solution.

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