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Why introverts yearn to work from home indefinitely

Work from home introverts

If you were to ask most people at my company whether they'd want to retain the ability to work from home post-pandemic, they would give you an unequivocal "yes."

And that includes extroverts whom, though they miss the in-person interactions characteristic of a traditional workplace setting, recognize the perks of working remotely, like working in one's pajamas, saving on gas, being able to get out of bed and walk right to work, and in some cases even spending more time with family.

It's plain to see why introverts would be the biggest (maybe not the loudest, but definitely biggest) supporters of this kind of arrangement:

  • We can leverage our preference for communicating in writing (via email, Teams, IM, etc.) -- which affords us the opportunity to think through what we want to say --without feeling as much pressure to be "quick" on our feet.
  • It's nice not to have to attend lengthy in-person meetings where nothing gets resolved. Phone/Teams meetings can at times feel like a drag as well, but given the freedoms we have to move around, dress comfortably, hit the mute button, and so forth, they're not nearly as onerous. 
  • With the couch and TV just a few steps away, it's easy to sneak in breaks throughout the day for recharging. Some of us might even be able to get away with quietly running errands, taking short walks around the block, or going to doctor's appointments without telling a soul. 
  • We're not forced to listen to small talk/water cooler conversations that interrupt our work. 
But employees aren't the only ones reaping benefits. In fact, by allowing associates to work from home, companies have managed to:
  • Lower their overhead costs
  • Get just as much work out of their employees, if not more so (since working from home can blur the lines between people's personal and professional lives, making it harder to disconnect)
  • Boost employees' morale, as they don't have to grapple with traffic and are insulated more from workplace politics
As much as introverts would love to work from home indefinitely, most companies aren't likely to take such a drastic step. We can expect legions of extroverts to complain of missing the in-person human element which, to be fair, certain introverts might miss as well. Then there are those who'd be better served at the office for other reasons, like no longer having to tend to their kids during working hours and not feeling the temptation to watch Food Network reruns on the sofa all day.

We can only hope that a compromise can be made that all parties will be on board with, like having the flexibility to work from home twice a week. 

There's no question that the pandemic has called for major changes in the way we live, work, and communicate with each other. 

Introverts will attest that the world we live in right now seems tailored made for them. Until we return to a world more closely resembling the one we lived in two years ago, introverts will continue to milk the perks as much as possible. 


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