Drawing conclusions from the pandemic: Changing work venues in relation to resilience as practice
Abstract: The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic shook the global economy to its core, enforcing wide-ranging working from home (WFH) movements in addition to traditional working from office (WFO) structures. As the debates continue over how to permanently embed WFH into the work reality, to do so successfully, the components of changing work venues must be evaluated. Hence, there is a growing urgency to adapt to the new ways of working through focused organizational and managerial intervention. Utilizing the grounded theory, the analysis of qualitative interview data from Germany and Sweden formed the foundation of the paper’s research on changing work venues concerning individual and organizational resilience. Here, young professionals shared experiences of WFH during the pandemic in conjunction with their time WFO before and after COVID-19 restrictions. Through the theoretical framework of resilience as practice, this paper establishes three processes that have a major impact on the quality of home office in relation to resilience: (1) adapting to WFH, (2) acknowledging the advantages and disadvantages of WFO and WFH, and (3) emphasizing individual preferences and differences. The study suggests that the more structured and faster the company adapted to WFH during the transitional period, the less pronounced the employee’s possible negative experiences were. Concerning the benefits of different work venues and individual preferences, this paper concludes that WFH is a substantial supplement to traditional work on-site with the potential to increase individual and organizational resilience.
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