Even as hybrid work culture continues amid ebbing Covid pandemic, a report on Thursday revealed that 78 per cent (nearly 8 in 10) of Indian professionals choose to go to office for socialising and bonding with their colleagues. While employees used to feel obliged to be physically present in the office, 78 per cent of professionals interviewed said they now do it by choice, according to a LinkedIn report.
The report also found that workers are generally more receptive to going to the office, with 86 per cent of the respondents saying they feel positive about it compared to a year ago. The LinkedIn report is based on a research conducted by Censuswide with over 1,001 workers in India aged over 18. The survey was conducted between February 28 and March 6, 2023.
According to the report, ‘desk-bombing’ is a new trend that has been embraced in the office and most workers like it when a co-worker shows up unannounced at their desk to have a chat. Desk-bombing is a term coming up in conversations on LinkedIn that describes the act of dropping by your colleagues desk unannounced.
Over 62 per cent of respondents in India see desk-bombing as a great way to have impromptu conversations and majority of GenZ workers in India (60 per cent) have experienced desk-bombing and find it useful, it added. GenZ are those who are born in the mid-to-late 1990s and the early 2010s. When organisations reopened after the pandemic, questions were raised on hybrid and whether lack of time in office and reduced visibility will have an impact on one’s career, the report said.
A LinkedIn report revealed that 63 per cent of workers feel working remotely has no harmful impact on their careers. However, a similar proportion also believes their chances of career growth could be reduced if they didn’t go to office as much.This could be a potential reason why 71 per cent of respondents agree that they feel they have to overcompensate when working from home to show that they are serious about work, said the report.
Workers are more conscious about how they balance their time between work and life priorities, and managers are pioneering new ways to do this, the report said. It also revealed that most workers (60 per cent) have experienced ‘loud leaving’ — when managers visibly leave the workplace, making it known that it’s okay to shut down and stop working at a reasonable time.
Workers are also structuring their work week differently and it has altered their last day in the office, it noted. An overwhelming 79 per cent say Thursday is the new Friday, which may stem from the fact that Friday is the least popular day for workers to go into the office. Of those Indians who say that Thursday feels like the new Friday, 50 per cent would spend more time with family and friends on Fridays, while 46 per cent would try to focus on finishing the week’s work quickly on Fridays and hop into an early weekend, the report said.
Workers are choosing to head into the office to socialise, bond and be part of a team. When asked why they would show up at the office, the number one reason for respondents was social interactions (43 per cent), followed by having more efficient face-to-face meetings with co-workers (42 per cent) and building work relationships (41 per cent) at a close second and third.
Over 72 per cent of workers surveyed said they miss ‘chai’ break (tea break) bonding in the workplace — where they could exchange banter with their colleagues about both their work and personal lives and have a laugh, it stated.
“We’re starting to see a shift in attitude when it comes to working in the office. While professionals in India favour the flexible work option, they are also finding immense value in heading back to office as it contributes towards boosting employee morale, improving collaboration and teamwork and identifying new opportunities. Informal conversations or chai breaks can also help boost long term career growth, when done with intention,” LinkedIn Managing Editor – India Nirajita Banerjee added.