Why Are So Many Leaders Botching the Return to the Office?

6 min read

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Following resignations and significant backlash from employees, Uber recently abandoned its plan to make all corporate employees go back to the office. You’d think Uber’s leaders learned nothing from Amazon’s June 10 decision to permit employees to work on a hybrid schedule after employee turnover and opposition. And neither Uber nor Amazon seemed to have learned from Google already reversing its intention to have everyone in the office.

Each of these companies wasted millions of dollars in employee churn, recruitment challenges, decrease in morale and productivity and changes to staffing and office-management plans. Yet now reports are suggesting that Apple faces similar pushback from within.

You must be wondering why these and plenty of other top leaders are pressuring their workers to go back to the office. Surely they must be aware about extensive, in-depth surveys that highlighted employees’ preference to keep working from home? These surveys were conducted from early Spring 2021  (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8)  and quizzed workers about how they feel about a return to the office after the pandemic. More than three-quarters of respondents wanted a remote work setup at least half of the time. Meanwhile, a quarter to a