You may not know the phrase, but you probably already hate the concept of the ideal worker norm. It's the unspoken assumption that employees have no right to ask for help from their employer, and it can lead to job-related terrors like the 24-hour workday. Employers who skimp on worker accommodations are hamstringing themselves, though. Not only is it the way of the future, it's the path to better productivity overall.
In 2017, the polling and research company Gallup released its State of the American Workplace report. The most engaged employees neither worked entirely remotely nor spent all their time at the office. Rather, they spent about three or four days each month — fewer than 20 percent of their on-call hours — working remotely.
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These kinds of accommodations can spin out in everyone's favor. The Gallup research found that remote employees tended to log about four more hours per week, for example. Offering alternatives to workers also helps employees reach their full potential. Writing for Vice, Shayla Love presents story after story of neurodivergent employees both suffering under common circumstances (open offices, overwhelming internal communication, trying to look busy when you've finished all your work) and finding ways to manage and thrive.
Even in the most hectic lofted workspace, there are probably ways you can hack your surroundings to get things done. If you need headphones to block out noise, offer your coworkers a system to know when to interrupt you. If you're in a management role, talk to your team about how you can support their individual needs to help them contribute and grow. Millennials are more than willing to walk away from a bad employer. It's worth working to reach why you started the job in the first place.