Disney CEO Bob Iger is going to crack down on remote work—in a bid to improve his company’s productivity and creative cohesion.
- Remote work remains an issue for employers and employees. Many companies, corporations, and firms have attempted to enforce return-to-office mandates in the face of declining productivity, weakening company cultures, and keeping expensive real estate.
- Disney is the newest company to enforce return-to-office mandates. CEO Bob Iger sent an email Monday saying that employees must work from the office four days per week as of March 1, 2023, CNBC reports.
- “In a creative business like ours, nothing can replace the ability to connect, observe, and create with peers that comes from being physically together, nor the opportunity to grow professionally by learning from leaders and mentors,” says Iger.
- 75% of U.S. workers prefer remote work. 33% of workers say they will seek a new job if forced to return to the office. Studies have shown that remote work can lower productivity but also increase it, and it can be tied to improved morale.
Why It’s News
Disney is in a weak place following its leadership upheaval in December and the appointment of Bob Iger as CEO once again. The company continues to hemorrhage money and is looking to make significant changes to increase profitability, cut costs, and increase efficiency, among them by reducing any productivity issues created by remote work—by enforcing one of the stricter office mandates of the past few months. The mandates are part of the company’s massive restructuring.
“The CEO is looking to revitalize a company hurt by a slumping stock price—shares dropped 40% last year—and spiking expenses at Disney+,” says LinkedIn News.
Backing Up A Bit
The future of remote work is unclear. Employers like Twitter, Morgan Stanley, Apple, AT&T, BlackRock, Prudential Financial, and BMO Financial Group attempted to return remote employees to the office through mandates this past fall, to mixed success. Twitter fired administrative staff, but other companies have folded or pushed back mandates indefinitely into 2023.
The mandates have primarily been met by negativity, with AT&T and Apple employees protesting them. It has only helped contribute to the “Great Resignation” as thousands of employees leave jobs for greener pastures. The demand for remote jobs is even outstripping availability, with 50% of applications chasing 15% of U.S. jobs. The average worker knows they have power, and they are willing to exert it for more flexibility.