Remote Work in Agility a Discussion

The agile manifesto says that the most valuable conversations happen face-to-face, but he also mentions that agile individuals and teams must be motivated and given the necessary environment to work. ¿is not this a contradiction?

During the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the Harvard Business Review conducted a study on the productivity of remote workers and found that working from home leads to higher productivity and results in more motivated employees. However, it was also found that the work-life balance and trust of supervisors and managers has decreased. Finally, when employees are not taken into account, they will end up leaving the company. Similarly, investment in technologies for distributed work and teleconferencing (replacing and upgrading the subject of face-to-face conversations) increased dramatically during the pandemic. With this new investment, the companies observed record profits, which shows that remote work is indeed very effective.

After 2 years of government health and safety measures recommending companies to have their employees work from home, asking their workers to suck it up when they are denied any raises or investment or hiring support due to austerity measures, now they require their employees to return to the office as before, under the same austerity measures now affected by supply chain problems, sometimes with a hybrid model that will soon disappear.

This has descended into phenomena called The Great Resignation and Quiet Quitting . In short, enrollees are looking for companies where they feel more valued and better paid, at the same time with better flexibility and more benefits. When they don’t get a sense of value, or satisfaction from their work, they become demotivated and accomplish only the bare minimum of their activities.

The vision of companies does not seem to coincide with giving their employees the best possible environment in which they can work flexibly. This, coupled with the conflict with Russia and Ukraine, has concluded in 2022, in high inflation where the average annual increase has been well below the global inflation rate. In Latin America , the projected inflation for this year seems to be similar to last year, and this has meant that foreign investment in emerging markets has decreased and in many cases vacancies and hiring have been frozen.

These companies then see very high levels of turnover, and in trying to find new employees they have been in a dilemma when candidates mention that they are looking for 100 percent remote work. Leading tech companies like Apple and Google have asked their workers to return to the office, even as they mentioned that the world had changed and remote work was here to stay. His workers have rebelled against him, forming internal communities to prevent and persuade their leaders to allow them to continue working remotely.

Many employees even moved to cheaper states in the United States, and even migrated to cheaper countries like Mexico. Trying to escape High levels of inflation and stagnant pay.

Many companies which already applied an agile framework appreciated all the infrastructure and team building around value during the pandemic.

In conclusion, agile leaders such as scrum masters and other facilitators of their teams should advocate for giving them the best work environment and tools, and fight for them when executives deny allowing remote work at the expense of losing the employee and even their team. Can senior executives be persuaded?

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