09 June 2024

Not Surprised

A study conducted by a an HR software firm has concluded that ¼ of executives and ⅕ of HR department workers hoped to get significant numbers of employees to quit by enforcing aggressive return to office rules.

How delightfully psychopathic:

A study claims to have proof of what some have suspected: return to office mandates are just back-channel layoffs and post-COVID work culture is making everyone miserable.

HR software biz BambooHR surveyed more than 1,500 employees, a third of whom work in HR. The findings suggest the return to office movement has been a poorly-executed failure, but one particular figure stands out - a quarter of executives and a fifth of HR professionals hoped RTO mandates would result in staff leaving.

While that statistic essentially admits the quiet part out loud, there was some merit to that belief. People did quit when RTO mandates were enforced at many of the largest companies, but it wasn't enough, the study reports.


The end result has been the growth of a different office culture, one that's even more performative, suspicious, and divisive than before the COVID pandemic, the study concludes.


A full 42 percent of employees who responded to the Bamboo survey said they show up solely to be seen by bosses and managers. If bosses think their presence in the office is making any difference to the amount of work getting done, the results indicate that's not the case.


"The distrusting and performative cultures some companies are cultivating are harmful to bottom-line growth," [BambooHR's own head of HR Anita] Grantham said, adding that RTO policies are okay, but not if they don't consider individual employee needs.

That's the whole point Ms. Grantham.  American managers at justify their existence by showing that they can make their underlings miserable.

That's what they teach in business schools, and what Jack Welch extolled as a virtue.


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