We aren’t working at home, we are living at work. Virtual presenteeism amongst remote working employees is on the rise driven by a paranoia to be seen to be always ‘at work’ and fuelled by the rise of employee surveillance technology. It’s stressful, and internal communicators have responded with a barrage of mental health and wellbeing communication, but should we have been focusing on creating remote-first organisational cultures instead?
As the coronavirus pandemic unfolds, social distancing has suddenly created a new army of remote and home-based workers. Internal communicators have responded by sharing tactics, content and technology solutions in an attempt to bridge the divide and build ‘engagement’ with employees, at a time when engagement is not the issue that needs to be addressed. The solutions to reconnecting remotely working colleagues are to be found in an understanding of human psychology and overcoming the negative behaviours this can catalyse in a divided workforce.