Back to the Office: Letter from Mark

By July 22, 2021 Insights, Mark Satov

Hello,

It has been a while since we updated you!

We are living through some interesting times and are riding the wave along with our clients and friends.

We see the M&A world continue to be very active, with a lot of work on commercial diligence projects and post-acquisition integration as well.

In speaking with our clients in various sectors, we see the search for talent as being the number one issue on the minds of business leaders. We ourselves remain on the lookout for unique and talented individuals who would fit on our team.

We notice that companies are now figuring out how to get employees back to work in a physical setting safely and comfortably. It will be a challenge for the next few months, but once we are well into 2022, I predict that it will be hard to see much difference in work and lifestyles, as compared with 2019. I remember noticing in 2016, 2017 and 2018 how all the progressive employers (tech start-ups, agencies, etc.) were investing heavily in the workspace: more free food, more entertainment areas, more lounging areas. They did that because they believed employees felt a sense of connection with their “place” of work that allowed them to connect with their colleagues. I am quite sure that employers haven’t abandoned that point of view, and that people have not lost the need to socialize in the last 17 months because of a traumatic, yet temporary, event.

To be sure, some employees in some positions (and personal circumstances) will take advantage of the increased flexibility and increased familiarity with technology that make remote work easier. I think that is a great development – and I sincerely hope that the next flu season will be mitigated by an increased ability to work from home. But we already see how excited people are to get back to collaborating in person, back to dining and socializing together, back to in-person entertainment and, yes, back to in-person shopping.

So when you see the 900th article about “the end of the office,” “shaking hands is gone forever,” or “it’s the last nail in the coffin for physical retail,” remember that pundits and journalists make dramatic statements to get noticed; for the rest of us, it is very hard to predict how we will all feel when we are out of the crisis that so consumes us today. We need to let the dust settle, let the stress dissipate and let humans act, well, human.

 

Mark