Coming Back: A Careful, Coordinated Transition Back to the Office Begins

Returning to the the office has definitely been something I have been waiting for. Personally, I have not been the biggest fan of the “work from home” culture, and I have found that many of my fellow Millennials feel the same. At the same time, I have learned a lot about my work habits and needs from working from home. (Check out these previous posts on my learnings: (1) Three Ideas To Help Improve Focus And Creativity, (2)Three Ways To Boost Physical And Mental Health, and (3) Maintaining The Balance.

Recently, I’ve been researching trends to see which generations want to be back in an office setting and which would prefer to stay at home.  The results were a bit surprising: Studies show Gen Z and Millennials are eager to get back into the office: They enjoy the work culture, group activities, direct access to mentors, and the growth and learning that can take place in the office setting. Surprisingly (or maybe not!), Baby Boomers are also eager to return to the office because of their need to teach and communicate.  So who would prefer to work from home? Generation X!  This group has been shown to enjoy working from home, a setting which enables them to spend more time with their families.  Gen Xers tend to be confident in their skill sets and can easily work from home (without needing approval or guidance).

At Hixson, we are, like most companies, a bit of a mix. I would say that for us, some of these social trends are true.  Yet we are more broadly defined by a wider range of work culture, home life, attitude – things more diverse than just what a particular generation as a whole may like. (One example, my colleague who edits our blog posts is a GenXer who would definitely prefer to be back in the office!) As designers and engineers, we share the passion to collaborate with one another. In addition, Hixson’s work culture actively supports and encourages mentorships as well as opportunities to learn from each other. This learning comes from formal training through our in-house Hixson University, as well as informally through observation,  conversation, and asking plenty of questions. We build from each other, and that can be hard when working from home.

The first week in September, 25 Hixson associates volunteered to come back into the office as part of a slow, well-planned return-to-work strategy. It is a very diverse group that represents a mix of Gen Z, Gen X, Millennials, and Baby Boomers.  Keep watching our blog as I document our changes and challenges as we continue this journey.

This piece is part of a series on Working From Home from Hixson Interior Designer Julie Morgan.

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