Each legal professional out there has been compelled to reconsider the way their programs are rendered thus finding a different equilibrium between work and personal life. Those who consider switching to the office every day to be a simple fact of life have now had a real chance to see the difference working remotely can make for themselves and their families – and many will continue to demand more adaptable options for the future.
Today, just as companies are making their move back to the workplace, it is a vital moment to understand whether remote practice will continue to support lawyers and their customers in the long run. Below are some of my own thoughts.
1) Exceptional support from any position is feasible.
While life has been far from usual for the past four months, several senior lawyers have soon discovered that they will continue to extend their practice, communicate with colleagues and deliver the same (if not better) quality of client support when operating remotely. And those who had never thought working from home to be a feasible choice before found themselves adopting modern technology and methods of functioning.
It is only feasible, of course, with a robust digital network in operation. Lawyers operating remotely will be assisted at all times by digital infrastructure, efficient collaboration systems and rigorous data protection controls.
We know from practice that this needs constant preparation and strategic consideration to insure that the best processes are in place to render remote work a success.
2) 100 percent remote is certainly too ambitious for certain individuals.
While remote employment provides far more mobility and versatility for senior professionals, the pandemic has underscored the reality that we are fundamentally relational beings looking for face-to – face contact from time to time. This is always a major contrast between being allowed to operate at home for two to three days a week versus being expected to do it all the way.
And while many of our attorneys still prefer to operate online, we’ve always missed our job center setting, partner socials and breakfast clubs. These events give all of us a chance to catch up with colleagues, build a stronger network, and discuss things in and out of work. A croissant or two isn’t affected either!
3) Reducing frequent driving is a major advantage.
I was very astounded to hear from the latest survey that the typical working worker in the United Kingdom spends 492 days commuting to and from work over the span of his lifetime. The related expense is no better; people pay around $800 a year on driving alone.
Yet the numbers don’t say the whole story. I have talked to many MSBPLC attorneys who have now been willing to spend more time with their friends, escape undue tension and build a healthier work-life balance simply by not needing to work five days a week.
Given that any senior professional in the US has practical experience operating remotely under their belts, we would assume that others would be aiming to reduce their transition period to maintain a more versatile way of functioning as they decide their next career change.