You are currently viewing “Back to the Office – or Not!” Join us on 2nd December

“Back to the Office – or Not!” Join us on 2nd December

We live in a time of both uncertainty and experimentation around the role and nature of the office, and about where work is best done. Our December Members’ meeting will explore some of the different responses of businesses and public sector organisations, and attempt to establish some order amidst the various approaches

European Smart Work Network

“Back to the Office or Not”
What does “going back to the office” mean post-pandemic?

Thursday December 2nd 2021

16.30-18.00 CET  (15.30-17.00 GMT)

Members’ meeting

REGISTER NOW! (login needed)

Here’s the programme for the session:

The European Commission’s Flexible Working programme

Stephen Collins, Head of Organisational Development Projects, European Commission

The pandemic has greatly accelerated the European Commission’s programme of Flexible Working. Stephen will provide insights into the the various drivers and constraints, and the multiple challenges of introducing flexibility and activity-based working into a traditional and often conservative institution.

This will be a very instructive and candid presentation, looking at the interplay of workplace, technology  and cultural/behavioural issues.

Remote-First for Vistaprint and Cimpress

Before the pandemic, Vistaprint, a Cimpress company, was a traditional premises-based organisation. However, they took an early decision to build on the advantages they’d found from remote working to become a “remote first” company. What this means is that, even after team members can safely return to working together in person following the pandemic, their primary place of work will be somewhere other than a traditional office. Paul McKinlay, VP of Communications and the company’s first Head of Remote, will talk through their thinking and what this means in practice.

The Panorama of Hybrid and Smart Working – which way to go?

Andy Lake, Director,, Founder, Smart Work Network and author of Smart Flexibility

The media has been overflowing with surveys, studies, report, anecdotes and industry hype about how organisations are planning for either a return to or a new “normality”. The office is dead, or alternatively reports of its demise have been grossly exaggerated. Some organisations are supporting much more flexibility and choice, others specifying a minimum number of days to be in the office, others planning a new normal much the same as the old normal. And there is both speculation and innovation around the kinds of office to return to, should we so choose.

Andy will attempt to separate the sheep from the goats by identifying key themes in the different options and approaches, and offer a way forward to maximise the benefits as you plan your future ways of working.

The session will conclude with a Panel Session for the participants to put their questions to speakers and to each other.


(login needed)

The meeting will be held via Zoom. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email from us. A little later, you will be sent a unique link from Zoom for joining the event on the day, and an opportunity to download a calendar appointment so you can reserve the time.

Watch out for these messages in case they are filtered into your junk folder.

Contact Andy Lake – – if you have any issues, or questions about the meeting

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