Office vs WFH

Which team would you be in? Team Office or Team WFH?

Had you asked me before I would have said WFH. I mean, it's so much more productive, I can throw in a load of washing, get things delivered, and eat my own home made lunch fresh.

I accepted that there are benefits of working in an office, not just for morale and team building, but also from a learning point of view. Being able to lean over or walk past and just ask something seems much easier than making a phone call or sending a message. Perhaps because in real life we can assess whether someone appears busy, stressed, close to tears, etc. BEFORE we pose our question and potentially push them over the edge. We can't sense check in on someone before we message or call them and so it feels like more of a possible imposition, a higher risk activity.

But... having meetings sat in comfy lounge or even PJ bottoms... the quiet space to think without others talking around you... and let's not forget - no commute!

It's not like I don't enjoy the office environment. I 'grew' up in one to some extent as my first full time job (and so ignoring part time work such as Laura Ashley and in pubs) was in a solicitors firm. I loved knowing all the people on my floor and some in other departments and chatting to them, and then being able to shut myself away into my office and crack on before re-emerging to go to the kitchen for a brew.

So the reason I am even writing this is that I am currently sat in a co-working space. I only came in the other day as they offered a free day pass to trial it out and I was feeling like I needed a different perspective. One of the best ways of getting a mental shift is by changing the external environment. And I have walked a lot over the last few weeks trying to do this :0) but I realised I needed something more.

So since that trial day I found myself wanting to come back. And so I have, every day since. The space is perfectly laid out, lots of variety of chairs, tables, workspaces, and sofas, with some quiet secluded areas. Everyone I have met so far is lovely and they are all getting on with their own work in their own way. There is free tea and coffee, which with my fluid intake makes the £12 for up to 10 hours a bargain (I could spend that easily in an hour at Starbucks or Costa).

But its the energy - it suits what I want. I want to be in an open, productive, and collaborative mindframe. And because I am surrounded by it I seem to be absorbing it. Also it just feels wrong (for me) to start watching Netflix when I end one job and pause for a break. Instead I go make a brew and chat to someone in there. So there is no risk of binge watching an afternoon away :0)

So, I suppose the point is, I didn't know exactly what I needed until I tried something new. Also, I am glad I didn't just keep banging my head against the wall in frustration that I didn't feel productive or inspired. I knew it wouldn't last, it never does, but that doesn't mean I have to like it! And I can keep trying new things because you never know...

The questions I could have used -

  • Q- What do you want?
  • A- Not to feel mentally stuck
  • Q- What would you rather feel?
  • A- Productive and inpired, energised and full of wonderful action
  • Q- What would that look and sound like?
  • A- I can't answer this as it now looks and sounds exactly like the place I am sat... :0)

I wonder though ...what would your answer be?