It looks like Millenials (Generation Y, born between 1982 – 93) are leading the working world into a glorious future where work isn’t shackled to the traditional 9-to-5 schedule anymore. These young workers, who will make up the bulk of the workforce in 10 years or so, are demanding flexible schedules that don’t tie them to a desk.
Managers have been reluctant to allow employees to work out of the office, worrying that Facebook time and unsupervised telecommuting would eat away at productivity. But companies that show they’re trusty by allowing greater flexibility in the workday see a payback in loyalty and higher productivity from Gen-Y workers who appreciate being treated like grown-ups.
Increasingly, workers are refusing to be on social media and technology blackout while at work, and they’ll get their Facebook fix through their phone if not their work computer. And as more workers seek jobs that allow them to be more flexible with home and family concerns, employers are responding with remote working options that allow people to get their work done on their own schedules. That flexibility is as much a concern as salary to many workers, and it leads to much higher job satisfaction.
Work and Life
The lines between work and personal life have been blurring for a while, and that work is increasingly not tied to a desk. So time away from the office doesn’t necessarily mean that workers are less productive. On the contrary, it may make them more productive since work hours can adapt to someone’s more naturally productive periods rather than slogging through the mid-day slump.
I think the biggest gain for employers and workers alike is the elimination of the commute, which is really a waste of time for everyone. The employer doesn’t get any extra work out of workers during that time, and it’s just lost a block of time that has to come out of workers’ family and personal time. And I’m not even mentioning the costs of commuting for the average person.
Hopefully, this trend continues and the newfound flexibility we find by killing the 9-to-5 workday will lead to more happiness and peace in the Middle East. Are you one of those telecommuting pioneers? Is anyone going to miss the rigidity of the regular workday?
image by Business Week