In case you missed it, The Great Resignation is no longer the biggest buzz term in the job economy. Recent articles, posts, and countless LinkedIn wars are revealing that employers aren’t so much worried about where they’ll find their employees — but instead are focusing on where their employees will work.
The lines are drawn and the arguments are fierce in the Work from Home (WFH) and Work Onsite debate with business owners having very big feelings on both sides of this issue. Apple recently announced that all of its employees had to return to the office, an announcement which prompted internal outcry and even resignations from top executives at the company.
Orange Pegs Understands Firsthand the Benefits of WFH
At Orange Pegs, we’re surprised to see all the heated discussions from business owners attempting to wrangle their workforce back into the office after 2+ years of working from home. Orange Pegs founder and owner Lucas Hamon, launched the company in 2013 as a fully remote digital growth agency — way before a global pandemic forced us all to rethink the way (and the where) we work.
Of course, we recognize that WFH is not best for everyone. Some workers’ preferences and strengths make them better suited for onsite employment — and there are some industries that will always require an in-person workforce. However, the recent surge in employers demanding a return to the office while ranting about how working from home promotes low productivity and lack of employee focus simply doesn’t track with what we’ve seen and experienced.
If the last two years have taught us anything about the U.S. workforce, it’s that we are more than capable of adjusting to significant and unexpected changes on a global scale while still getting our work done. We’ve also been given a rare opportunity to watch workers tap into their own unique professional talents, problem-solve, and raise the productivity bar in entirely new ways — all while running Zoom calls from their living room couch.
We can’t help but wonder, after two years of recognizing and celebrating the unique skill sets employees have leveraged to keep businesses thriving, why are we still debating the validity of forcing everyone back into the exact same work environment? Here are just some of the many benefits we’ve learned about the Work From Home model from experts at remote work culture.
Remote Work Encourages a Flexible Work Environment, Supporting All Types of Professionals
Eliminating the pressure of going into the office allows professionals to work when and where they’ll be most productive, creative, and efficient. They can create a workspace that caters to their needs and sets them up for success. They can choose their own “office hours,” and curate how they’ll spend their time in between working for the work/life balance win.
Today’s workers are graphic designers by day and earning their BA in Business at night. They own marketing agencies and freelance on software developer gigs. They manage their households and parent and volunteer in their communities. Rather than making it difficult for our workforces to earn a livable income, be present at home, and pursue their dreams, shouldn’t we be supporting them?
At Orange Pegs, many of our team members have their own ventures on the side including Etsy businesses and PR agencies. Others flip houses or some are parenting children in every age group. One even runs his own CBD farm. Working remotely gives us all the chance to do good work and work on ourselves while getting ahead in this unpredictable, volatile economy. By working this way, we can better position our families for the future.
For Orange Pegs Project Manager, Jamie Merrick, the WFH model helps her manage her professional and personal priorities. “I love that I’m able to work with both team members and clients across the country and still carve out time to be available for family activities. I also appreciate knowing that I’m able to take online courses and earn certifications from home that help grow my professional skill set. I can truly work and learn from anywhere without sacrificing my role as a mom.”
Remote Work Reduces Company Costs
Remote work effectively eliminates a business owner’s cost of running an office, which can include rent, furnishing and stocking an office, commuter reimbursement costs for employees, and technology for your employees to work on.
As a remote worker, WFH offices can be quite inexpensive as well. Professionals may buy coworking hours or spend money at coffee shops, but largely they are working from an already established space in their home. These costs are just a tiny fraction of the cost a business owner would spend on physical office space.
Commuting can also take a noticeable mental toll on the creativity, energy, and willingness to work from employees. As OP’s VP of Growth, Rob DeRosier noted, “The thing I love most about WFH is the three hours I get back every day. I used to spend an hour and a half fighting traffic on my commute to and from work. Now I roll out of bed and walk down the stairs for a day that I am actually excited about. I can be my most productive self when my motivation to work hasn’t been sucked out of me by spending the first moments of my morning sitting in my car. Life is too short to waste sitting in traffic.”
Mental and Physical Health Thrives in a WFH Environment
Possibly the best argument for working from home is the benefit it provides the mental and physical well-being of remote workers. OP Growth Professional, Sara Vargo optimizes her time from home to prioritize her day-to-day physical health. “For me, eating healthy, fresh meals is crucial to my physical and mental health. I used to spend almost an hour each night before work prepping my breakfasts and lunches. Being able to utilize my kitchen and have that 30 minutes to an hour the night before back in my life has been something I will never take for granted again.”
Beyond promoting daily physical health practices, WFH can also prove a lifeline during an unforeseen medical event. Cortney Farmer, Orange Peg’s VP of Content, experienced several unexpected WFH benefits after a cancer diagnosis. “Working from home was invaluable for me after my diagnosis. Cancer would have made it impossible to keep up with the demands of my job in an onsite work model. WFH meant I had the flexibility I needed to get to multiple doctor appointments to put together a treatment plan. Also, all through chemo I was able to plan my work day around when I knew I would feel and perform my best.”
Mental health and wellness can also improve using a WFH model. Studies show that working from home helps professionals manage their overall mental health by providing greater flexibility for things like breaks, exercise, and spending time with family.
Burnout and time spent looking at a screen also accounts for a lot of the stress on in-office employees. The more screen time you have without breaks, the higher risk of sleep issues, neck and back pain, depression and anxiety. As a WFH employee, you can listen to your body more freely, taking breaks when you need them most.
Technology Has Removed Any Roadblocks for Success
Luckily, technology has made working from home successfully easier than ever before. Zoom, Slack, world-class CRMs, and even email make it possible to communicate, connect, collaborate, task, and hold meetings from anywhere with a wifi connection.
Tools like Vidyard or other screen-capture tools offer a platform to perform video walk-throughs and in-depth explanations — without ever standing over someone’s shoulder. We’ve found Vidyard particularly useful for onboarding new employees and clients.
Virtual Drive folders allow for the storage of marketing assets while DocuSign provides a platform for virtual signatures and the secure storing of sensitive documents.
There are fewer and fewer excuses for not being able to effectively communicate and collaborate with coworkers and/or clients. If you’re finding a barrier to remote work, chances are there is a tool out there to solve your problem.
Orange Pegs is Proof That Remote Success is Possible
We can keep telling you Orange Pegs supports WFH, but we’d rather let the success and growth of our business speak for itself. We have grown in revenue every year since its inception in 2013 and secured clients across the country, typically without ever meeting them in person. Since the start of the Pandemic, we've
- Increased revenue by over 200%
- Expanded our workforce across six U.S. time zones
- Hired 6 full-time employees from 5 states
- Added multiple shareholders
- Significantly improved employee turnover
- Followed dreams of living where we want to live
Most importantly, Orange Pegs has established a dynamic and positive culture that transcends employee location. OP CEO and Founder, Lucas Hamon, recognizes the importance of establishing connections with the team. “One of the things I’m most proud of with our WFH model is that we’ve managed to create a thriving work culture in a fully remote environment. We communicate daily, collaborate extensively, and foster a growth mindset mentality that positions us to do what we love and deliver great results to our clients — all from the comfort of our own homes.”
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