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Goldman Sachs employees refuse to return to work face-to-face

Goldman Sachs employees stage a remote working revolution

With the decline of coronavirus cases within the US, the Goldman Sachs is the first to take steps to return to “normal.” The investment bank decided to reopen its New York offices last February and required its employees to return to their face-to-face positions.

The company’s CEO, David Salomon, had been insisting for months that he didn’t quite see the purpose of remote working. This is a model he considers a “temporary aberration” within the wake of the pandemic.

However, his employees don’t seem to accept as true with that view, as only about 5,000 of the quite 10,000 who work there showed abreast of the day of the facility’s reopening. A circumstance that wasn’t thanks to a communication error.

Consistent with the U.S. Magazine, all employees were perfectly informed of the reopening, but rather opted for a sort of rebellion against the workers’ obligation to return to the office.

The struggle to preserve the face-to-face work structure

Goldman Sachs spokesmen have explained that, despite the low attendance on the primary day, employees kept returning in greater numbers throughout the primary week of the reopening. Eventually they reached between 70% and 80% occupancy of their huge 44-story Manhattan headquarters.

However, those numbers still fall far in need of what Salomon had intended, which was nothing quite the return of his entire staff to the office five days every week.

The CEO of the U.S. bank has a strong point of view. He believes that a crucial part of the company’s success is bringing highly skilled workers together within the same space and collaborating under an equivalent roof.

He believes that dispersing them, although it works temporarily, as its record earnings in 2021 have shown, finishes up eroding the teams and deteriorating what makes Goldman Sachs unique.

A “work from home” pandemic

The-remote-working-revolution
While many of the market giants have decided to embrace remote work on a permanent basis, Goldman Sachs believes it may not be so beneficial.

At the onset of the pandemic, Goldman Sachs sent 98% of its worldwide workforce home. Within the Americas, Europe, the Center East and Africa, in mid-March, in Asia even earlier.

When the contagions began to hamper after each pre-omicron wave, it had been more flexible than other companies within the sector. They didn’t demand the immediate return of its employees to the offices.

At an equivalent time, however, managers like Salomon were already thinking that the longer term of the corporate was neither remote working nor hybrid, but primarily face-to-face.

No information has come to light on the explanations given by these 5,000 workers for not responding to the company’s call, nor on the results of their disobedience. Neither is it known whether, in sight of this circumstance, Goldman Sachs will rethink its policy of a strict return to face-to-face attendance.

Running the biggest companies… with remote working

The situation now developing at Goldman Sachs is neither new nor unique to the U.S. bank. The talk on remote working may be a kind of yo-yo that comes and goes, counting on the epidemiological situation of the planet.

It goes almost to the bottom when the coronavirus infections soar and that we have it back in our hands when the amount of cases drops. Now that Omicron wave seems to possess given us an opportunity, companies need to address the difficulty again.

But the disparity of criteria between managers and employees is once more evident.

One of the businesses that had more problems with remote working was Apple. Between summer and autumn of 2021 starred during a resounding disagreement between managers and employees that ended with the departure of some professionals to other companies within the sector.

Apple workers then considered that they had demonstrated that they might work remotely with an equivalent effectiveness as within the offices. But the company’s managers, with Tim Cook at the top, had a special opinion.

The controversy was finally resolved – temporarily – by Delta and Omicron.

In the other side, Google has also announced that its employees had to return to the office a minimum of three days every week. This decision has made them somewhat more flexible in their demands. Although they need made it clear that on-site work is additionally the well-liked model altogether Alphabet companies.

Other companies, like Microsoft or Amazon, have opted to let people remote work until things are basically in check, to not change the model every six months.

While Salesforce decided to vary its policy permanently in February 2021, no matter what happens due to the pandemic, and offer three options: hybrid, fully remote or in-office. Meta, Twitter and Spotify, meanwhile, have announced that their employees can work remotely forever.

Is this the beginning of the end of the work structures as we know it?

Big-companies-adopt-remote-working-permanently
New York companies call their employees back to office.

The sectors in which these aforementioned technology companies and Goldman Sachs work are different. Among many financial firms the back-to-the-office option is gaining ground, some with the flexibility of a hybrid model, but others with face-to-face five days a week, especially among Wall Street giants.

In addition, New York City Mayor, Eric Adams, which is home to those firms, called on the city’s companies a couple of weeks ago to urge their workers back within the office. In his view, empty buildings were slowing the city’s recovery from the pandemic.

Apparently, the traditional face-to-face work structure struggles to prevail. Remote work is showing signs of being the revolution for employees, and seems to be the future for many companies.

Conclusion

Without a doubt, the pandemic changed our way of life and “normal” as we knew it is almost a myth. This directly influences our lifestyle and above all how we manage our work.

We see how large companies opted for remote work formats in order to survive the pandemic. The funny thing is that in an unexpected twist, working from home has become a permanent measure.

Some companies like Goldman Sachs, the U.S. bank, have shown a little more reproach at the work-from-home revolution. In their first attempt to call their employees back to the office, only 50% of them attended.

We see how other big names in the market have had to succumb to the implementation of hybrid work modes (remote working and in office). In the other hand, other companies have almost fully embraced remote work.

What is certain is that Goldman Sachs is resisting change and trying to maintain classic employment standards at all costs. But its employees seem to be resisting it.

Is this the beginning of the end of work structures as we know them?

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