Covid grads (those who graduated during or after lockdowns) love to come into the office, but their managers? Not so much according to several articles by established media last week.

I’ve linked to an article in the The Australian Financial Review (in comments) that says that new grads love the office, seeking social interaction and the ability to shadow those with more experience and learn through impromptu conversations.

EXACTLY what I’ve heard managers voicing concerns about losing over the last 3 years with the advent of remote and hybrid work.

Funnily enough, now some of those same managers appear to be reticent to come back to the office themselves.

To me, this highlights a few things.

First, there are so many workplace trends in the post-Covid world that are surprising and counter-intuitive.

Second, reality can be far different from commonly accepted perception.

Third, a one size fits all policy actually fits none. To lead effectively we need to understand the needs of our team and provide what they want and need to be motivated and productive – or effectively manage their expectations when we cannot.

Fourth, where (and when and how) people work needs to be fit for purpose. What serves the needs of the customer? The team? Then the individual.

I see too many companies still trying to manage by corporate policy instead of through human connection and conversation.

The first can trade short term gain (it’s easy to create a policy) for long term pain (if no one likes the policy they won’t adhere to it and, in a candidate short market, will vote with their feet).

Link to original article (must have a subscription to read): https://www.afr.com/work-and-careers/workplace/pandemic-grads-love-the-office-but-bosses-say-they-lack-one-skill-20230522-p5da9s