Remote Work Revolution: Pandemic Alters American Working Norms

Remote Work Standing Desk

Remote Work Revolution: Pandemic Alters American Working Norms

The COVID-19 pandemic has undoubtedly reshaped the American work landscape, transitioning many employees from office cubicles to home office setups. The shift towards remote work, once seen as a temporary measure, has now become a prevalent mode of operation. Timothy Golden, a management professor at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York, explains that the pandemic has revolutionized our perception of work, making remote work not only acceptable but also expected.

Recent statistics from the U.S. Department of Labor reveal that about 34% of Americans worked remotely at least part of the time in 2022. This figure represents a significant increase from the pre-pandemic percentage of 24% in 2019. Several prominent companies, including Amazon, Apple, Meta [Facebook], and Disney, have reintroduced in-office work for a portion of the week. Goldman Sachs reported in October 2022 that over two-thirds of its employees had resumed full-time in-office work.

However, the shift back to the office has not been met with universal approval. Cathleen Swody, an organizational psychologist and managing partner at Thrive Leadership, reports that many employees are resisting the compulsory return to full-time office work. After three years of proving their productivity and reliability while working from home, these employees feel their competence is being unfairly questioned.

Golden, who has spent over two decades studying remote work, observes that this transition underscores the enduring struggle between managerial control and employee autonomy. Many managers feel uneasy about not being able to physically supervise their employees, which challenges their sense of control.

A 2022 survey by management consulting firm McKinsey & Company found that 58% of 25,000 American respondents had the option to work from home at least one day per week. Of these, 87% chose to do so. According to Ryan Luby, an associate partner at McKinsey & Company, most employees prefer a blend of remote and in-office work. This hybrid model allows them to maintain a reasonable commuting distance while enjoying the flexibility of working from home.

Interestingly, Luby notes that many employees value this flexibility more than wage increases, presenting an opportunity for employers to manage wage growth concerns by offering flexible work options. Moreover, the newest members of the workforce – recent college graduates – have entered the job market with different expectations. Having started their careers amid the remote work trend, they are more likely to seek jobs offering remote or hybrid work options.

With an electric height adjustable standing desk or the best sit stand desk, employees can create a comfortable and productive workspace at home. The health benefits of an electric stand up desk include improved posture and reduced risk of sedentary lifestyle diseases.

In conclusion, experts agree that a full-time return to the office is unlikely for most workers who have experienced remote work during the pandemic. The convenience offered by technology and the advantages for both employees and employers are too significant to ignore. As Swody puts it, “The horse has been let out of the barn… It’s going to be very hard to go back to where we were.

author avatar
Guy Director
Higher Diploma in Mechanical Engineering. Ergomotion Director since 2005.

Google Reviews


Google Reviews

Andrew Pieterse 14/06/24

Great service and really quick shipping. It is great to know that you are getting quality parts from a Scandinavian manufacturer with your standing desk purchase rather than the cheap knock off stuff you get from other major brands. Reasonably priced for the quality too!

Janette Clarke 20/05/24

Guy was very accommodating with meeting him at a time that suited me. He assembled the desk prior to me collecting so I only had to carry it inside with help (it's pretty heavy). The desk is great, the storage racks underneath with the 6 x built in powerpoints was worth the extra money. I have a functioning & tidy workplace.
Guy was brilliant, I highly recommend.

Nickel 10/05/24

Have now purchased 2 stand up office desks off Guy, benchmark sales service from him, all via email, so easy; from quote to plug in, only matched by the strong quality of these machines, solid and stable. If only everything in life was this easy and reliable.

Jennifer Fadriquela 23/03/24

I purchased an EDesk this month from Ergomotion, and it was a remarkably smooth transaction. Guy was eager to answer all my questions before my purchase. As a first-time buyer of a standing desk, I truly appreciated how he addressed my queries with thorough details and provided options within my budget.

The delivery process was also smooth, despite a slight delay in the ETA. Guy ensured I received all necessary updates from the courier/removalist.

I've been using the desk for a couple of weeks now and I'm satisfied with it. It's sturdy on all height adjustments and the motor works as expected. I also like oak finish because it's clean-looking and suits my room setup.

Overall, I'm happy with my purchase and I'll definitely recommend Ergomotion to someone looking for their desk needs.

Josh Oliver 04/02/24

I've had an ergomotion desk for 10 years. It's still as good today as it was brand new. Over the years Guy has always responded promptly to any guidance I've needed (mostly help putting the desk back together after removalists take it apart).

Michael Cheung 18/01/24

Great service from Guy and the team at Ergomotion! Helped with all my queries and was able to source a standing desk part for me when many others weren't able! Highly recommend!

Shao Lei 30/11/23

Decent desk and awesome service. Highly recommend

Rod Hathway 10/11/23

Awesome experience. Great value, super customer experience, ordered, assembled and picked up in 24 hours!

Dom K 06/11/23

Skip the big name brands and buy from Guy instead, 10/10 linak parts with a very well built tabletop.

Chris Wu 06/11/23

I purchased the edesk from Guy at Ergomotion. Guy was a pleasure to deal with and the desk arrived the next day. Guy was highly knowledgeable on the desk and provided very prompt support on the installation. I can highly recommend Ergomotion.