For many organizations, COVID provided an epiphany: offices are not essential. Remote teams can be effective from anywhere. At Viget, we learned these lessons more than 15 years ago when we first split across offices and began to support remote team members. Now that 20% of our team is permanently remote and the rest succeeded at the sojourn for the past 15 months, why re-open our offices at all?
While offices may not be essential, ours are enjoyable, useful, and appealing to many. They’re located close to our favorite coffee shops in active, walkable neighborhoods. They’re bright and open, but with plenty of nooks for quiet focus or ad hoc collaboration. Most importantly, they’re increasingly occupied by the fellow humans we’ve missed connecting with in-person. We think people will enjoy having a well-designed office to come to, and that they’ll benefit from the time spent among peers.
However, we’re not insisting that anyone work from them. We’re responding to what many on our team have told us: they want to come back into the offices, at least some of the time. Hence, our “hybrid” future: a blend of fully-remote, fully-in-office, and a mix of the two. With clear communication and a culture of reflection, we’re excited to learn as we go.
Personally, I’m local to our Durham office. This week, I’ve loved returning to the huge windows, natural light, and quiet workspace. But my favorite part of this new age is how it makes plain our policy to “default to trust.” As we partner with clients to build a better digital world, it is clear to me that trust is fundamental at Viget: we trust each other to do our best work in our preferred place.