’s office in Seattle, Washington, is empty with employees working from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020. (Photo by John Moore / Getty Images)

Gee and Ursula from KIRO Radio opened the phone lines last week to have listeners explain why they care about going back to the office or wanting to work from home. This is a big question most workplaces are facing right now as COVID-19 restrictions are gradually being lifted.

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Host Ursula Reutin hopes people will return to the office soon if she misses their energy, but she understands the desire for a hybrid model while host Gee Scott wants to keep working from home.

The first caller took Gee’s side and said they would like to continue working from home.

“My company is actually switching to a hybrid, as Ursula speaks, like a few days in the office and a few days at home, but I really loved working from home.”

Part of what they loved about work from home is that they are home when their kids get on the bus to school and come back in the afternoon.

“Even though I work and I’m up in an office doing my job, I’m still at home. I’m still allowed to be there when they get home and that … wasn’t an option before and now it’s becoming and, I mean, it’s a silver lining. I just wonder what our society could look like, how it could look different in a few years, if more parents were at home when their children come home. “

This listener also pointed out that it looks like the extroverts at work are the ones who people want people back in the office, while the introverts tend to be more supportive of work from home.

Another listener shared that he started a new job last year and has enjoyed video call training.

“It’s actually great for training – nobody annoys you, you’re not sitting next to each other in front of a screen. She can show me her screen, I can show her mine [we] feed each other without interruption from anyone. This part of the training was amazing. “

On Facebook, other listeners tuned in and said, “Go back to the office. The surrounding shopkeepers and bartenders missed you. “

Another wrote, “The only people who insist on going back to the office are those who have to micromanage their employees.”

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One listener who has worked at home since the 1990s called to share his perspective and said he actually feels closer to his peers now because of the increasing frequency of video calls.

“In this strange environment, I’m actually closer to my colleagues around the world now because Zoom meetings and people talk to each other about Zoom. It is important to us to show our face. “

On the other hand, one listener said that face-to-face contact gives us all the opportunity to work on interpersonal skills, get to know our colleagues, build camaraderie and support local businesses.

“I think we forget we make a lot of money when we go back to work, don’t we? I mean, it’s our local economy – we stop to refuel, we buy something for lunch, we share a snack with a colleague. And I think that’s the important part about getting back to work. I think it gives you the opportunity to prepare yourself mentally and deal with other things that you normally wouldn’t do because you don’t have the ability to communicate with people. “

Listen to the rest of the comments below:

Listen to the Gee and Ursula Show on weekdays from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on KIRO Radio, 97.3 FM. Subscribe to the podcast here.