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Do you recognise burnout when you see it?
ALSO: The Butterfly Effect of remote working
Make Work Better is a weekly newsletter of the best reads to inspire better workplace culture. If you’re new round here, welcome! A couple of weeks ago I shared culture survival advice from lots of other firms.
A short newsletter this week because I’m frankly in a simmering panic of being overwhelmed of having no childcare. Shout out to everyone in the same boat!
Unhealthy eating, cynicism, getting easily annoyed, impatience - do you recognise the symptoms of burnout when you see them? This is a great article going into the specifics of a condition we hear about a lot. You could definitely use this article to power a team discussion.
A reliably brainy piece by Derek Thomson at The Atlantic looking at the butterfly effects of remote working: ‘In network theory, this is known as Metcalfe’s Law: The value of a communications network rises exponentially with the number of its users. The same has been true of remote work. In 2018, it was weird and rude to ask a boss to move a meeting to Skype, or to tell a business partner to fire up a Zoom link because you can’t make lunch. The teleconference tech existed, but it was considered an ersatz substitute for the normal course of business’. It’s interesting to see US analysis forecasting that remote work will lead to the decline of big cities, meanwhile in the UK it’s too easy for firms to think we’re going to be in the office 3 days a week… something doesn’t add up here🙃 It can’t be that some countries will see the opportunity of remote work to untether us from location and others thinking that we still need to service the commute a dozen times a month. The question is which do you think is the end state and what’s stopping us getting there quicker?
“One big hit has been the weekly ‘Dear diary’ blog, written by different senior managers, in which they share not only their work thoughts but also the trials and tribulations of everyday life”, I also contributed to this piece about how companies keep workplace culture going when the team is apart
Spinning selfish behaviour as need - The commercial property sector are claiming that the amount of people working in offices right now is double what it was at the start of the first lockdown. In light of the raging pandemic and truly grotesque death toll we’ve experienced this week, this quote really turned my stomach: “Whether it is kids, flatmates or just the need to be in proximity to others, increasing numbers of people need to be somewhere that they can dedicate their time and energy to working”. We defeat this disease (if indeed we are going to be beat it) when we act as a team to control it, not just give up because we ‘miss the bants’.
Could we be back in the office by the summer?
In vaccine/Covid chat this is fascinating:
The UK vaccinated 600,000 people on Sunday, merely sustaining this rate would put us on track to fully vaccinate all of the people who want the jab by the end of June. Will be fascinating to see if that means we can start resuming normal life after the summer.
Make Work Better is created by Bruce Daisley, workplace culture enthusiast. You can find more about Bruce’s book, podcast and writing at the Eat Sleep Work Repeat website. My brand new Audible Original about remote working was a top 10 title on Audible last week - it’s free if you’re an Audible subscriber.
2nd book writing status: ⬛⬛⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜ 22%