Kitchen Table or Work Table?

You’ll realize my vote as you read on…

I’ve been working with many pre- and post-COVID clients who primarily work from home. To be clear, they work for organizations/companies that have physical offices. But they have chosen to remain remote for whatever reasons they have…professional or personal.

Here’s the rub: while many now realize the importance and value of mutual in-person collaboration, remote workers remain on an island.

One client I’ll discuss represents my point here: an over-devotion to working at the kitchen table, not the office table.

As we worked together throughout 2023, we focused on being seen and heard more than he had been. This was especially urgent given how his company has changed its direction and how valuable his participation in this shift could be. However, he began to lose his vision and the purpose of his contributions. This contributed to his decision not to join his peers in the office.

Here’s the killer: being too out of sight was also too out of mind. He was thwarting his value and contributions but also the manifestation of it to move his peers forward with his judgment and valuable intelligence. Simply because he wasn’t there to demonstrate the strength of his resolve. That point resonated with him.

Through my recommendation, I added that he would influence the direction the company was taking by being able to motivate the team he very much wanted to be a part of the new plans. Doing that in person was going to be far more effective and would bring added urgency. There’s no substitute for spontaneous collaboration, strategic direction-setting, and team interaction.

He’s now arranged a formalized schedule of office participation re-invigorated with his purpose and contribution. It has reinvigorated his team, too!