When is a leash necessary?

Early in the pandemic, two complimentary things happened: thousands of people adopted dogs, and thousands of school yards, sports fields and municipal parks went empty.

This situation allowed owners to let their dogs run loose where leashes would normally have been required. And now that little (and not so little) people have returned to sports fields and municipal parks, police officers are stepping up the enforcement of leash regulations.

Something similar is bound to happen at the office, as millions of employees who got used to working from home are now being recalled. Just like leashes, some work rules will have to be enforced anew. But all rules?

The single mother, who was working on her laptop from 6:00 to 7:30 AM, and then taking her kids to school, running a few errands in town, and returning to her laptop at 9:45 AM – will she now be able to arrive “late” at work?

The employees who wore t-shirts on team Zoom calls – will they have to revert to collared shirts, even on days when they have no meetings?

The dad who went to see his daughter’s after-school volleyball game at 4:15 PM, and made up the work time after dinner – will he be able to skip out of work early?

What is the workplace for? Who is it for? Why do we have offices? Why do we need people in them? Those are the questions we need to revisit before we blindly apply the old, pre-pandemic rules.

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