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VOL. 45 | NO. 5 | Friday, January 29, 2021

In the new normal, you might never meet your boss face to face

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Before the pandemic, your manager probably had more of a say in where you were day to day.

“The authority to decide where employees must be at certain dates and times is a big part of many managers’ power,” says Liz Ryan of Human Workplace. “Now that numerous corporations have announced their intension not to bring employees back to the officer, some managers are losing that power. Not everyone is OK with it.”

In short, it’s tough to ask people to be in the office every day now that it has been proven to be unnecessary. This is the truest for white collar jobs, whose work life revolves around a computer.

Companies told us for many years that we could not work remotely. It wasn’t possible. It wasn’t productive. It would hurt our teams. Fortunately, this is not completely true. The pandemic taught us that.

The pandemic gave companies no other choice but to adapt. Offline processes have found their way online. Meetings are consistently held via Zoom. One-on-one conversations take place virtually.

And, somehow, many big businesses are still in business.

The thing many people didn’t expect is the long-term impact of staying at home. There are a number of large companies that have announced that they don’t plan to ask their employees to return. And, the trend is catching on.

When you look at job postings, location is no longer such a factor for many jobs. Some are listed as remote. Other postings are listing more than one large city to give increased flexibility. And, many are listed with both a city – and information that the company is open to any location and remote work.

If you are one of the many people who like working from home, this may be the time to think of looking for a new job. It’s not clear yet if companies will remain as flexible once the pandemic passes. But for those who lock in a permanently remote situation now, they will likely be able to keep the option long term.

And the best part? Companies are now interviewing remotely, too. There’s no longer a need to fly all over the country to shake hands. You won’t even have to sneak out of your job to interview. You’ll be able to interview from the comfort (and the privacy) of your own home.

If you can work from anywhere, simply search without a city name. Read the job description to see if the company mentions remote options. Even if the posting doesn’t, you should consider applying.

Job seekers are applying for jobs out of their market and being hired with no expectation of relocation (even after the pandemic is over).

The nature of work is changing. If you enjoy working remote, make a resolution to make it permanent.

Angela Copeland, a career expert and founder of Copeland Coaching, can be reached at copelandcoaching.com.

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