Link To Guest Website: https://www.marczlegal.com/
Title: “What Employers & Employees Are Looking For In A Workplace Setup”
Guest: Marc Zwetchkenbaum of Marc Z Legal Staffing
Interviewer: Jonathan Freedman – MAGE LLC
Click here to read the transcript
Welcome back to Radio Entrepreneurs. I’m Jonathan Freedman and our next guest up in the studio is Marc Z with another Marc Z Moment. Marc, welcome back as always to Radio Entrepreneurs.
Thanks, Jon. Great. Always to be here.
Well, you are always timely and topical with things you want to talk about. And as we reemerge as a society, as a Commonwealth, we’re going to talk about bringing people back to the office. So what are the challenges? What do you see going on? And I know it’s happening very quickly and the rest of the country, Massachusetts is opening up as well. So what do you see?
Marc Z (35s):
Well, first of all, as we’ve had these discussions in terms of, it seems like things seem to be happening quicker. Just like when the pandemic started, it was like this momentum to finally, we’ve got to, we’ve got to go on hold in terms of our society because of this pandemic is happening so quickly. Now the good news is with vaccinations. The whole timelines have changed a lot of companies and law firms. We’re in Oregon, all organizations of all kinds were thinking, okay, maybe in the fall, we can finally get people back or talk about it, or it could be into 2022. But as we’ve seen, a lot of this is happening quicker.
Marc Z (1m 19s):
Vaccinations are now available to everyone. You don’t need an appointment. It’s dropping you going to CVS, Walgreens drop in time. It’s no longer trying to go on a site that you get boxed out. So what’s happening or organizations and firms are rethinking the time clock and trying to get people back as early as the summer, as early as June and a lot of professionals, a lot of even staff, they really don’t want to come back as quickly. They hadn’t planned on this. They don’t know in terms of what arrangements they can make in terms of families that have childcare needs.
Marc Z (2m 1s):
So on one hand, if you pull employers, most employers would love to see everybody back. Full-time in the office, in the seat. So to speak, if you pulled employees like a lot of the polls have been doing, they want flexibility of some kind. Most of them are fine coming back in some way, but I think it’s like 5% to 8% of the employees want to come back. Full-time in the office. And so that’s a challenge. It’s a huge
Jonathan (2m 37s):
Challenge. And it’s a big paradigm shift in terms of how, how I think employers are going to have to deal with employees and, and policy acceptance and guidance, right?
Marc Z (2m 47s):
And one of the challenges is getting employees that want to come back vaccinated and who’s going to be the staff police we’ve talked in previous episodes. You can a health exception, or a religious exception to being vaccinated because employers technically can have a policy that people have to be vaccinated, but a lot of employers don’t want to enforce it. They want to use the carrot versus a stick approach. So employers are offering more sick days or, or vacation days or letting people come back. Once they’re vaccinated to take time where they can work from a lot of different remote locations, Google, apple, Oregon, a lot of organizations are giving incentives.
Marc Z (3m 38s):
Law firms are saying, you know what? You don’t have to come back right away. Let’s start with a day or two. And then we’ll build up to a certain point. And then we’ll still have some flexibility. Once you get vaccinated, we even have states giving incentives, you’ll enter the lottery, you’ll get lottery tickets, you’ll get a, a a hundred dollars gift certificate or bond, or even a American express or, or checked whatever, any kind of incentive. Now what’s interesting, John, we never talked about this, but in the fifties, when you had the polio vaccine, that there was a real polio epidemic, you had almost a hundred percent people getting vaccinated.
Marc Z (4m 25s):
They wanted to get vaccinated. They were like, sign me up. Whatever. Now I think it’s political. It’s just in terms of freedoms. I think it’s technology, but you’re not going to get that and we’re not going to get that herd mentality. So it’s the challenge that that’s really two extremes.
Jonathan (4m 46s):
Well, it’s a challenge on multiple fronts. I mean, I agree with you wholeheartedly. We’re not going to get anywhere near what experts, tell us your herd immunity, 75, 80%, whatever that is. But I think there’s multiple levels to it. One is this notion of, if you’re vaccinated, you don’t need to wear a mask and need to come into work. You don’t need to provide any proof that you’ve been vaccinated. So everything is now on an honor system. And we know that, you know, take any slice, take a conservative number, 10% of the people never tell the truth, right? So, you know, what do we do with that? It’s that sense? And I think all of us have probably been faced on some level. I traveled a little bit outside of the area last week and the world is open.
Jonathan (5m 26s):
You know, the virtually nobody in Southern states, or I shouldn’t say virtually nobody, but very few people are wearing masks. And I can tell you that it’s, it’s a culture shock for people from the Northeast. I was walking around Massachusetts yesterday and found many people wearing masks in public when we don’t have a public mask ordinance anymore. So we’re going to have this huge dichotomy of people who believe in masks and will wear them perhaps for a long time. And it’s got real implications because now you’ve got people stepping into an office environment, wearing a mask, and you’re looking at them saying, is that person not vaccinated? You know, why are they wearing a mask? And it’s that hesitancy to remove the mask. So I, you know, I think, I guess some of the conclusions, and I’d like your opinion in terms of where employers go is, you’ve got to listen to employees, you’ve got to hear them out.
Jonathan (6m 9s):
You’ve got to hear what their feelings are and what their, their concerns and fears are. I think what we’ve established is there was a hesitancy to wear masks. Now we’ve got people that are wearing masks that are going to be hesitant to remove their masks. And, and now the flip side is that as I just alluded to you have people inferring all kinds of things because people are either wearing masks or not wearing masks. Are they, are they not vaccinated? Can I get near them? Can I sit in a conference room with them? So I, I think organizations are going to be up against that fine line of disclosing personal health information and running an organization where people are open and honest and feel comfortable. And I think that’s going to present a lot of uncertainty and a lot of gray over the foreseeable future, right?
Marc Z (6m 54s):
No, I, I agree with you. And I think in the end of the day, as you say, employers have to listen to their employees, it can’t be, you’re going to have to do this. You’re going to have to do that. It’s gotta be a collaborative effort because you’re looking long-term, for example, we’re, we’re finding for 95% of our clients, they’re, they’re taking a long-term vision. So they’re, they’re going with the hybrid mode. They really want to have people in their seats, but they’re like we understand. And you know what, it’s, it’s shown through the working remote process that people can work from home, but at the same time, we really need the collaborative process side.
Marc Z (7m 37s):
So if you can come up with that balance, understanding like you can’t dictate because it’s not going to be good for long-term collaboration, then that will
Jonathan (7m 48s):
Work. Yeah. I, I tend to agree. And I think that hybrid model is here to stay. I think that, you know, employers have to provide the, the means and the capability to bring people together, but also to, to allow the remote work. You know, I think it’s a multifaceted, you know, where we’re sitting in an empty office space. At some point, you look at it and you say, wow, you know, it’s like a sporting event ticket from last week. It doesn’t do us a lot of good right. Get on. So sitting with empty office space suddenly look at and say, if people aren’t coming back, what are we going to do? So I think we’ve got, we’ve got to get ourselves through multiple hurdles, but the bottom line here is, is communication listening. And, and, and I think a key word coming out of this pandemic is flexibility.
Jonathan (8m 30s):
We’ve all learned to pivot. We’ve got to pivot, you know, we’re going to face a lot. A lot of organizations, a lot of leaders are going to be facing things they’ve never felt faced before. And I think it gets really sticky when it gets into health, because of all the protections and HIPAA and disclosures and whether or not you can ask people these questions and whether people want to disclose it. I found in general that most people are happy to disclose that they’ve vaccinated, but I suspect that we’re also going to come up against people that are not willing to be vaccinated and not willing to disclose whether or not they are. So that takes us back to the gray area. So, correct.
Jonathan (9m 9s):
All good as always mark topical timely, you know, thinking about what the future holds for employers and offering guidance and suggestions, great stuff. This has been a mark Z moment, a market people want to reach out and talk to you about either staffing or other employment related issues. What’s the best way for them to reach you?
Marc Z (9m 26s):
Well, Jon, first of all, just Google Marc Z,- M A R C and the letter Z and we’ll come right up, or go to MarcZlegal.com, M a R C Z L E G A l .com or six one seven three three eight one 300.
Jonathan (9m 41s):
You’ve been listening to Radio Entrepreneurs and we’ll be right back with another segment on Radio Entrepreneurs.
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