Another Working from Home Post: Comcast is Forcing Center City Employees to Come Back Three Days a Week

DISCLAIMER: I used to work at Comcast. I was let go like a lot of people at the height of the pandemic. Probably should’ve honestly been fired sooner than that. Before the pandemic even started, I used to hide in the cafeteria on floor 43 all day and write blogs and think of video ideas trying to build Wooderboys instead of doing work I was actually paid to do, because I hated the job. When the pandemic hit and we were working from home, my workload became basically 90/10 Wooderboys/Comcast. You could argue I stole money from Comcast like Chris Webber did. Loved the people though.

Comcast is forcing employees in the Center City offices to return to work for at least three days a week, in a memo sent out by the CEO, Dave Watson last Tuesday, which was obtained by

A big part of our culture is working together. Innovation thrives when teammates are together to spontaneously consider and debate ideas. Our ability to listen and take action on key initiatives is enhanced. And for teammates hired since the pandemic began, it’s important to be able to provide better guidance and management and for them to develop face-to-face relationships.

It is clear that in-person interaction and collaboration is core to our company and culture,” he continues. “In fact, as we’ve spoken with teammates around the company, many of you have shared that you are eager to get back into the office. We’ve also heard that when you have come in in recent months, there are fewer people in the office so the experience is not as rewarding and productive as it could be. To optimize the experience while supporting the business, we’ve concluded that we need more certainty and direction to coordinate our in-office time better.

Inside sources at Comcast are saying people are freaking out, which makes sense when you’ve worked at home for last two years. Comcast actually thought people would come back by offering free breakfast and lunch, but it turns out you’ll sacrifice spending more on groceries when you don’t have to fight a homeless guy for a subway seat at 8 a.m.

To make matters worse, it didn’t help that the leader of HR mocked companies who were forcing their employees to work three day weeks the same day the CEO wrote that memo to employees in a now-deleted LinkedIn post:

via Crossing Broad Mystery Source

I don’t know if OldTakesExposed feels like branching out into corporate America, but there is probably an underutilized market if they do.

I really can’t blame Comcast for pulling this move. They opened up a beautiful, billion-dollar building a year before the pandemic. They want people to use it. Kevin had a great blog earlier today shitting on Malcolm Gladwell’s take about working from home ruining people’s productivity and communication skills. In it, Kevin laid out how people are more productive because they don’t have to commute 30 minutes anymore or leave work early because their kid gets sick. Fair points. But for every person who can handle working from home, there are a ton of people who take advantage of the system. I don’t think people should be monitored, or their hours spent at their desk tracked, but I know people my age who run more errands or spend more time watching Netflix during the work day than when they aren’t in the office. Is that good or bad? I don’t know. It depends on that person’s time management skills. I just know if the Eagles gave AJ Brown $100 million they’re going to monitor his work ethic and performance when he shows up in training camp and be pissed if he doesn’t live up to the contract. That’s the same way with companies spending billions a year on hiring.

I will tell you this –

Comcast has one of the top work/life balances for a Fortune 50 company, especially compared to what I hear other people go through. In by 9 a.m., the elevators pour out with people around 5 p.m., bosses don’t care how you get your work done just as long as it is, and most departments have summer Fridays where you’re out by 2 p.m. Conversely, I would hate this move if I was an employee, but that’s because I’m an asshole who doesn’t give a fuck what Bill in accounting did this weekend or care that Karen’s kid made honor roll. This will be an issue for a week or two. I remember when they canceled “Fill Your Plate Friday,” where you could fill as much food on your plate as you could from the lunch room for like $5. Now that was a real issue.

Kinkead: Malcolm Gladwell is hopefully reading this story from the comfort of his own home