Remote and hybrid work may be here to stay since many workers say they hope or plan to work from home once the pandemic is over – and employers are responding. The Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) conducted a survey on the topic that found 74 percent of businesses plan to offer employees remote work after the pandemic.
The current real estate boom indicates that a lot of people are boldly moving outside of commuting range to show they’re serious. Small towns like St. Thomas, Ontario are seeing record real estate prices, with house prices going up as much as 50 percent since this time last year. All over Ontario, bidding wars are breaking out, and homes are being sold over asking, as remote workers abandon the city for more space and a higher quality of life.
At the same time, a report from the Future Skills Centre found that many Canadians are concerned that remote and hybrid work will negatively affect their careers. The report, Work at Home or Live at Work: The Complexities of New Working Arrangements, came from a survey of 5,300 Canadians. While most respondents gave a positive view of remote work and hybrid work, many others, such as youth, immigrants and BIPOC respondents expressed worry about their careers and remote career management.
- 48% of young workers (age 18 to 24)
- 60% of Indigenous workers
- 44% of immigrants and 60% of recent immigrants, but only 36% of those born in Canada
- 46% of racialized workers
In total, one in two Canadians has been working from home at least partially during the pandemic.
Despite some downsides, seven in 10 people working from home said that once the pandemic is over, their employer should show flexibility and allow them to continue working remotely, which brings me back to my original point: for many of us, working from home at least some of the time, is here to stay.
So, is there a way to work from home without risking your career?
- Visibility is key. Treat online meetings like you would any meeting. Show up on time, properly dressed and prepared.
- Make it a habit to arrive a few minutes early to video meetings and use that time to chat with colleagues and the boss.
- Make a point of contributing. This is your only opportunity to be seen and heard.
- Training is another opportunity to be seen. When mandatory training comes up, attend with what looks like enthusiasm. If optional training opportunities are offered, consider joining for the sake of visibility.
- My recent blog post on Buttering up the Boss from Home contains more helpful hints on how to stay visible from home.
- More recently, I also addressed this topic in How to navigate career advancement in the new world of hybrid work published by the Globe and Mail, Report on Business, July 13, 2021.
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I/O Advisory Services Inc. – Building Resilient Careers and Organizations.™