Quotes & Comments…

“Now that companies have built the framework – and experienced the cost and time savings associated with it – there’s no real reason to turn back.” – Mark Lobosco, VP of Talent Solutions at LinkedIn

“Working from home makes it much harder to delineate work time from personal time. I encourage all of our employees to have a disciplined schedule for when you will work, and when you will not, and to stick to that schedule.” – Dan Springer, CEO of DocuSign

“I can’t tell you the number of CEOs I talked to who are thinking, I have to solve the diversity challenge in my business, and remote work is one of the key tools… We have to let go of this very office-centric culture and incorporate people who are in a lot of geographies.” – Hayden Brown, CEO of Upwork

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FM Broadcast – Spring 2021

The Future World of Work

FlemingMartin held our quarterly CHRO Lunch Series in March, bringing together 95 senior human resources executives from Life Sciences and Technology companies throughout California. Our guests spent considerable time sharing their thoughts and plans regarding Return to Work/Return to Office.

Unsurprisingly, CHROs shared that most employees want to maintain some flexibility, while some Executive Teams have a strong desire to get everyone back into the office as soon as possible. CEOs cite concerns about weakening culture, missed opportunity for collaboration, and a lack of hands-on and timely coaching. Each company is trying to sort out how to best align their policies with their core values and organizational DNA. Some quotes from our conversations are below, and a more detailed overview can be found here.

  • “We had a culture that was very resistant to remote work pre-pandemic. We discovered that we have been even more productive while remote. People have been working harder and with fewer boundaries. We have grown tremendously during this period, but we do not yet know whether attitudes toward remote work have permanently changed.”
  • “Management wants people to get back in the office ASAP. It’s going to be pretty tough to do. We feel that new employees, especially younger ones, are missing out on the culture and the development opportunities. No on-time coaching is happening right now. We have some young, smart people that we want in the office to help them develop.”
  • “We plan to be a work-from-office culture when we get through the pandemic. We had a 9% attrition rate last year but expect to potentially see that number double or triple with the work-from-office approach, but I am okay with that. We want a culture that relies heavily on casual conversations. We acknowledge that remote work may be productive, but we are betting that innovation and better relationships can be achieved through an in-office culture—particularly when it comes to development of manager level and below employees.”
  • “Many of our employees believe that commuting is just lost productivity.”
  • “It’s our leadership’s strong desire for most people to come back to the office. But the new expectation will be just three days per week in the office and two days per week WFA (work from anywhere). There is much more openness to that type of arrangement than there was in the past.”
  • “We are planning to operate like consulting companies. We want to copy their playbook in having our employees come back on-site primarily for team trainings/culture-sustaining events.”

The decisions companies make regarding return-to-work are critical and will significantly impact their ability to recruit and retain talent, as well as their overall ability to compete and innovate in their industries. There will be winners and losers and we will begin to see the impact of these decisions in the near future.

Harvard professor Prithwiraj (Raj) Choudhury has been studying the Future of Work since 2015, well before the COVID pandemic brought the grand experiment of widespread remote work to the masses. His research has been cited in many articles recently and has generated much discussion in HR and Executive circles.

Here are some recommended resources and articles. We look forward to seeing what’s in store for us all.

FlemingMartin: Lessons Learned from CHRO Lunches

HBR: Our Work-from-Anywhere Future

McKinsey: COVID-19’s Impact on Women’s Employment

Harvard: What Worked about Online Work

Big Risks in Return to Offices

Is Remote Work Here to Stay?

Client Snapshot: NKGen Biotech

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Founded in 2017, NKGen is driven by a noble mission: to improve patient outcomes in cancer by developing safe and effective cellular therapies that leverage the power of a patient’s own immune system.

The Company’s innovative and unique NK cell immunotherapy, SuperNK™ (SNK), stands out from other available therapies because it is autologous, not genetically modified, and has less chance of side effects than competing therapies such as chimeric antigen receptor T-cell (CAR-T) treatments.

FlemingMartin is proud to partner with NKGen and recently recruited Phil Moody as their new CFO to help steer the company through its next phases of growth.

FlemingMartin News – Announcing Our New Digital Health Practice Leader, Laila W. Keith

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FlemingMartin is pleased to announce that Laila Keith has joined the firm as our Digital Health Practice Leader. As the firm’s Digital Health Practice Leader, Laila brings over 20 years of success in collaborating closely with diverse corporate partners to establish and grow mutually beneficial relationships centered on talent and development.

Before joining FlemingMartin, Laila spent nine years driving sales and leading sales training efforts for Johnson & Johnson Vision. She worked her way up the ladder at J&J, rising from Senior Territory Business Manager and Field Sales Trainer to Sales Excellence Trainer for the US, Canada, and Mexico. As a key member of J&J’s elite training team, Laila advised business leaders in numerous functions, spanning HR, Sales & Marketing, Communications, Compensation, Finance, Legal, Healthcare Compliance, Customer Success, and Leadership Development. Her broad-based expertise at J&J encompassed sales force effectiveness, integrity, inclusivity, effective performance coaching, change management, talent retention, talent development, and cultivating a winning culture.

Prior to J&J, Laila served as a Senior Sales Consultant for Novartis and at Sanofi-S.A. Earlier in her career, she worked at Morgan Stanley in their Investment Banking and Corporate Finance Execution Divisions.

Laila is passionate about advancing healthcare and brings an eclectic sales, leadership development, and training background to executive search. She aims to provide clients with a unique, dynamic perspective to guide senior-level hiring decisions and build exceptional management teams. Laila is a native New Yorker and earned her Bachelor of Arts in English and French Studies from Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut.

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