"It is critical that we are all present in our offices," wrote Jacqueline Reses, then a Yahoo executive, in a staff memo. "Some of the best decisions and insights come from hallway and cafeteria discussions, meeting new people and impromptu team meetings."
Today, Reses, now CEO of Post House Capital, an investment firm, has a different view. "Would I write that memo differently now?" she said. "Oh yeah." She still believes that collaboration can benefit from being together in person, but over the last year, people found new, better ways to work.
如今擔任Post House Capital投資公司執行長的雷瑟斯卻有不同看法。她說，「我現在會用不同方式寫備忘錄嗎？是的」。她仍相信面對面交流有助合作，但在過去一年，人們找到更好的工作新方式。
As the pandemic winds down in the United States, however, many bosses are sounding a note similar to Reses' in 2013.
"Innovation isn't always a planned activity," said Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, about post-pandemic work. "It's bumping into each other over the course of the day and advancing an idea you just had."
Jamie Dimon, CEO of JPMorgan Chase, said working from home "doesn't work for spontaneous idea generation, it doesn't work for culture."
Yet people who study the issue say there is no evidence that working in person is essential for creativity and collaboration. It may even hurt innovation, they say, because the demand for doing office work at a prescribed time and place is a big reason the American workplace has been inhospitable for many people.
"That's led to a lot of the outcomes we see in the modern office environment — long hours, burnout, the lack of representation — because that office culture is set up for the advantage of the few, not the many," said Dan Spaulding, chief people officer at Zillow, the real estate marketplace.
"The idea you can only be collaborative face-to-face is a bias," he said. "And I'd ask, how much creativity and innovation have been driven out of the office because you weren't in the insider group, you weren't listened to, you didn't go to the same places as the people in positions of power were gathering?"
He and others suggested reimagining the office entirely — as somewhere people go to every so often, to meet or socialize, while daily work is done remotely. At Zillow, nearly all employees will be remote or come in only once in a while. Several times a year, teams will go to small offices set up for gathering.
'Black Widow' Gives a Taste of How Theaters and Streaming Can Coexist 黑寡婦證明 戲院、串流平台可共存
There has been a lot of hand-wringing about the demise of movie theaters over the past year and a half, and for good reason. Most were closed for at least a few months during the height of the pandemic. Companies like the Walt Disney+ Co., NBCUniversal, WarnerMedia and Viacom have started to prioritize streaming for their films, in part to bolster subscriber interest in their own Netflix-style platforms.
"Black Widow," a long-delayed Marvel movie, collected about $80 million in the U.S. and Canada from Thursday night to Sunday for Disney. Overseas, the superhero movie sold an additional $78 million in tickets. That means that, in total, roughly 17 million people went to see the movie in a theater, according to Rich Greenfield, a founder of the LightShed Partners research firm.
Disney also made "Black Widow" available on its Disney+ streaming service, which has more than 100 million subscribers worldwide. Subscribers could instantly watch the film (and have permanent access to it) for a $30 surcharge. Disney said Sunday that Disney+ generated about $60 million from "Black Widow" orders over the weekend. Greenfield said that figure equated to about 2 million transactions and about $48 million in revenue for Disney after streaming partners had taken their cut.
There are several takeaways. "Imagine being a theater owner and realizing studios need you less and less everyday," Greenfield wrote on Twitter. "Leverage is shifting rapidly in the streaming era toward the studios."
On the other hand, the fact that 17 million people decided to leave their bubbles and go sit with strangers in a theater — amid rising coronavirus infections, the result of the delta variant — when they could just push a button in their living rooms is nothing to sneeze at. For now, theatrical distribution remains a major revenue generator and cannot be ignored if studios want to make money on big-budget spectacles.