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The 4 work personas that have come out of the pandemic

Now that we’ve passed the year mark of the pandemic, most of us have settled into new routines. While vaccines hold the promise of a return to normalcy, not all employees want to go back to the way things were. Employers now face a unique challenge as they build the workplace of the future, says Mary Bilbrey, global chief human resources officer at the professional services firm JLL.

1. The traditional office worker

This person is ready to get back to the office. They probably didn’t work from home prior to the pandemic and will want to be in the office most of the time going forward.
"They are not as attracted to flexibility or rotating schedules as other employees will be", Bilbrey says. "The challenge for companies is if a traditional office worker manages other teams. This person will need to take extra effort to recognize that their team members may be across other personas".

2. The experience lover

Experience lovers had high aspirations for flexibility prior to the pandemic. While this persona values their work community, they find that time away from the office also enhances their feelings of engagement, fulfillment, and empowerment.

"This worker will likely want to spend two to three days in the office with the flexibility to work outside the office too", Bilbrey says. "The challenge for leaders is understanding how to manage someone who is sometimes at home in a way that isn’t disruptive to other team members. It needs to be organized and may involve scheduling days when it makes sense to collaborate with other team members".

3. The wellness addict

Wellness addicts value their work-life balance and health. Pre-pandemic, this type of employee embraced remote work and shorter commutes, allowing for a good balance between their private and professional priorities. While the experience lover prefers more days in the office, the wellness addict wants more days at home.

"This employee wants to come to the office just one or two days a week", Bilbrey says. "They need a company that will allow them to create a good balance. You see a lot of wellness addicts in digital and tech industries".

4. The free spirit

This employee wants to work remotely full time. Time with family is a main priority. "They might come in for a special meeting or engagement but prefer to work at home full time", Bilbrey says. "They don’t want to be put on a regular schedule. In fact, they may live outside of the office area. The challenge for managers is to make sure those workers continue to feel connected and included".

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