It used to be a little more clear. You wake up, shower, and make breakfast in one place. ...
Issue #7
Computer with a sad face on the screen

I hope we meet IRL someday

What if the job you start in 2020 is your very first job? What's it like to start your career remotely, without all the [dead] weight of the water cooler chat and obligatory Friday pizzas? As I was writing the first draft of this episode, I thought I knew it all. Gen Z and remote work? What could be easier to understand? They grew up with phones, they’re on said phones all the time, so of course they must THRIVE in the world of remote. Well — the only thing more enjoyable than being right is finding out about your being wrong before others do. And indeed, I was pleasantly surprised that I could not have been more wrong.
🔮 Back to the future

What are the world's loneliest jobs?

Humans are surprisingly good at adapting to change: The switch to telework is not the first of its kind. Since the early days of the industrial age, people were worried that the new technology would leave millions without jobs. Neoclassical economists predicted that this would not happen, because people would find other jobs — although after a long period of painful adjustment. That prediction largely proved to be correct.

Agriculture was the basic economic activity for the most of modern human history, dating back over ten thousand years ago all the way to Neolithic revolution, when people stopped hunting and started planting (rhyme unintended.) And, admittedly, farming is a lonely occupation: Most of the time, it’s just you and your family. And often much more than 40 hours of work per week. But people adjusted to that lifestyle, and then to the shift to industrial economy, and then the service economy, along with ongoing urbanization.

“If you’re not connecting with other people, then you’re isolated socially. And I don’t feel isolated out here. Part of that is having that sort of online community that I’m a part of. And part of that is just being happy where I am.”

Those are the words of a present-day lighthouse keeper (there are still some which are not automated): a very lonely job indeed, although probably much less lonely nowadays, compared to the early 18th century.

Back then, the job just appeared, and it required quite some adjustment and adaptation on the part of those who undertook it. As the main characters of "The Lighthouse,” a 2019 psychological horror film starring Robert Pattinson, know all too well, loneliness on the job can be devastating. (Although it should be said, they didn’t have neither TikTok nor online church services to keep them company.)


Remote for life, or maybe not

A visualisation of a paper plane flying away

Here's another groundbreaking idea: Your childhood habits almost entirely shape and define your idea of a norm. And if you're getting your first job in 2020, you might have easily been six years old when the very first iPhone was announced. You grew up with a smartphone; your friendships and romances and classroom dramas largely developed online, over text and Snapchat and Insta, and so it probably only makes sense that remote work (not just remote, but remote-first, if not remote-only) is a natural next step in that trajectory?

And here's where your (mine) assumptions slash prejudices about reality are instantly shattered by cold hard facts. Exhibit A: People aged 18–24 report that their productivity had decreased since they started working remotely. Exhibit B: A survey published in the Journal of Media Education concludes that Gen Z prefers learning in person. Exhibit C: "Most of them prefer in-person communication over tools like texting and videoconferencing," per a professor and researcher of Gen Z and remote learning. Exhibit D: According to an Ernst & Young survey, 90% of those same Gen Z individuals (what a strange turn of phrase) want some kind of human touch to be a part of their work interactions, and strongly value working together.

So, there's hope? On the one hand, the corporate dystopia, endless Zoom days, etc. On the other hand, human's natural need for socializing was not (luckily) ousted by tapping cold glass screens for many hours a day for quite a bit of years. Possibly/probably, young people are going to save us all — exactly how it should be.

A visualisation representation of Pitch templates

Saving teams from horrible virtual offsites, one template at a time

No one likes awkward bonding sessions, whether they happen IRL or online. But getting to know your coworkers is important. As we’ve been learning better ways to work together remotely, we found some really cool ways to build better bonding sessions, retrospectives, onboardings, and more, and then we turned them into templates for any team to use.

Get presentation templates for modern teams

Pitch blog, 5 min read

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