Is it up to employees to fix the remote-work promotion gap?
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Managers are more likely to give workers that they spend time with key assignments and, as a result, develop their careers.
In the wake of the pandemic, it's become evident that some managers view in-office workers more favourably. This represents a concern for remote workers: managers biased toward colleagues they see more often may overlook or potentially stigmatise home-workers.
Companies must find ways to ensure remote workers get the same opportunities for advancement as everyone else. Firms are still coming up with best practices to address this issue, but workers could still be in for an uphill climb.
Whether remote workers are likely to encounter promotion-related bias depends on the organisation's working model.
If you're in the minority of people who are working remotely, you're probably at a disadvantage in terms of promotions. But if the majority of people in the organisation are working remotely, then it will be a different story.
Policies are relatively new, and it's unclear to what extent they might close the promotion gap between remote and office workers, but achieving parity will be a long process.
Remote workers can take steps to ensure they remain in contention for promotions.
Remote workers need to be proactive and make themselves as available and visible as possible.
It's in the long-term interest of companies to find a way. Promotional bias towards in-office workers could become an equity issue.
Since hybrid work is forecast to remain the post-pandemic normal, there's growing awareness that companies need to create a supportive environment for remote workers or risk losing that talent to a company that will give them what they want.
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