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Human Resource Development International ; 25(2):231-253, 2022.
Article in English | APA PsycInfo | ID: covidwho-20244388


COVID-19 triggered a monumental shift to remote work. The challenge of connecting and relating among knowledge employees emerged globally, and research about remote work in this unique circumstance surged. However, we know more about the impact of remote work on knowledge employees in low-context cultures than in high-context. Given that Brazil is high context, we explored how remote work impacted relating and connecting among knowledge employees in Brazil. First, employees lost the informality of work-life;instead of informal, fluid communication and collaboration, participants had to book appointments and schedule time to discuss simple issues. Second, good-humoured behaviours diminished, implicating connectedness. Third, non-verbal communication ceased, and employees lost facial expressions, eye contact, and other prevalent signs necessary for context. Fourth, the loss of unstructured exchange of experiences and ideas lessened tacit knowledge sharing. Fifth, workspace inequalities emerged as the employees' homes were unequipped for remote work. Lastly, the most significant win was work-life balance. Therefore, remote work in high-context cultures is not without peril;culture and socioeconomics underline remote work's self-generating, self-organizing mechanisms. Thus, corporate leaders and human resource professionals should address remote work as a layered phenomenon and, carefully, with employees, co-construct the notion of connecting and relating. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2023 APA, all rights reserved)