Poll: More Americans Prefer To Work From Home

Even when it's safe to work in the office, more Americans prefer remote work. And many find they are working longer hours.
Posted at 8:18 AM, Aug 10, 2020

Six months into the coronavirus pandemic, remote work may be the norm well after the virus subsides. But many people are finding that work from home means they're working more.

"I think work life balance is a facetious statement. That doesn't mean much. There's just life," said Shane Pearlman.

Pearlman runs digital agency Modern Tribe. His team of 130 plus employees, have been entirely remote for 14 years. 

Pearlman said, "Remote work isn't for everybody by default, and that's OK."

Harvard Business Review found remote workdays were 10 percent to 20 percent longer than office days. Pearlman says company collaboration is key to creating a digital work environment. 

"Healthy teams are based on trust and that trust comes from knowing somebody well enough to understand how they're going to react to situations. Trust is predictability," said Pearlman.

And Pearlman says you can nurture trust through digital connections like social Slack channels.  

Taking some time to plan out "off-limit" work hours and set boundaries on what types of communications can wait (like emails) can go a long way in making the best use of working from home. But for Americans who have kids, working from home can be difficult. Mandy Price consults companies on their work culture. 

"So you can't assume that your employees have childcare during a pandemic. … One of the things that we've also recommended employers do is to provide your employees with stipends," said Price.

That extra cash can help pay for babysitters or in home care. A July Newsy-Ipsos poll found that more Americans who work from home prefer to do so even when it becomes safe to work in the office. 

Pearlman said, "You need to consciously design your day in your life because nobody's going to do it for you."