So this was going on…
While all of LI was losing its collective mind over the “crying CEO,” something else much more significant to the life of the working class person was going on.
Should we talk about the very clear push for RTO? Ha ha ha, naw. Let’s blow up the internet with the pros and cons of the crying CEO. 😖
Well too bad! I’m gonna talk about it because I think you need to know what’s coming down the road, especially if WFH is important to you.
I’ve seen a clear increase in RTO fluff pieces / WFH hit pieces and I don’t believe this is a coincidence.
On Monday, I released a bonus podcast episode about Malcolm Gladwell’s indictment of working from home in your PJs. Now, you might say, “Why talk about him but not the crying CEO?” Because I think Corpo America pushing everyone to c’mon back to the office has more of an impact on the workaday world than a viral social media post that will be forgotten by this time next week. In the summary for that episode, I don’t bury my thesis:
“The very first line reads, ‘Author Malcolm Gladwell thinks that remote work is hurting society and that a recession will likely drive employees who are ‘sitting in their pajamas’ back into the office.’
I’ve been warning you for months now that Corporate America would use an economic downturn to its own advantage, including a demand for RTO. Welp, now we’re here.”
Last weekend, LI published a real gem:
Riiiight. So at first, we had Lord Elon announcing that people could pretend to work somewhere else. If that narrative wasn’t strong enough, we’ll push the notion that remote workers are thieving! Buwaaahahaha! Now, nevermind the fact that BI itself admits, “Data on people outsourcing their work is hard to come by, but anecdotal evidence from company execs suggests the practice is on the rise.” (emphasis mine) Ignore that important bit of intel…
There also seems to be a lot of corporate propaganda telling us that work needs to give us a sense of purpose, meaning, and belonging. And how can you get that from sitting in a home office? Why, you need to be dragged to hot yoga and listen to biographies in the car as you commute. (Super yuck.)
These seem to be recurrent buzzwords they want to emphasize. Why does this come from your job? What is the American / Western world fascination with your job defining everything you do all the time? Why can belonging and necessity not come from, oh, I dunno… other things like who you are as a person, your family, your friends, your religions ideas and connections? Why must it result from Corpo America?
Because that’s what puts money in their pockets, I’m sure. Be naïve at your own risk!
Returning to the article from Fortune.com, we find:
“The economy has a case of remote work. That’s the story corporate America told in second-quarter earnings calls. To some CEOs, any ills their companies face inevitably come down to the fact of people logging on from home.”
Further down, we read:
“The message is clear: remote work hurts the bottom line because too many businesses are still set up for a 2019 world.”
And there’s the rub. They want to blame the remote workers. They are still set up for a 2019 world and instead of figuring out how to pivot (to use their own corporate jargon), they’re gonna blame it on you until you place your butt back into the cube farm.
If you don’t see that coming, I don’t know what to tell you. 🤷🏻♀️
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