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There Is an Intimacy That Technology Can't Replace, Rishad Premji On Hybrid Work Culture The Wipro chairman also said that tech industry is one of the spoilt industries in terms of this model of how we work

By Teena Jose

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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Wipro chairman Rishad Premji, at the Nasscom India Leadership Forum held in Mumbai on Wednesday, has opined about the hybrid work culture that return-to-office is important to bring back better relationships and there is an intimacy to it that technology can't replace.

"I'm going to say something controversial. The tech industry is one of the spoilt industries in terms of this model of how we work. It is the only industry working so uniquely and we were passionately discussing how incredibly important it is to come back together," said Premji quipped that there is a difference between connecting with a friend and a Facebook friend.

Premji was speaking at a fireside chat with Amit Chandra, founder and chairperson of Bain Capital India Advisors, on the topic 'How can leaders adapt to the new normal?' while they discussed the future of work, the culture and innovation.

The Wipro chairman further remarked that, "The future of work is hybrid. People should have the flexibility to work from home, but people should also be coming into organisations. The reality is that you have to access talents and should also make it more inclusive. One of the reasons that the virtual model also worked back three years ago is because a lot of people knew each other. The IT services industry has seen higher attrition in the last two to three years and 40%, 50% or 60% of the people are new to the organisation and they have never been to an office before. I feel you cannot build that kind of a connection or intimacy no matter how advanced the tech gets. I am a big believer that we should come back in some shape and form and connecting with people has an intimacy to it that's irreplaceable with tech."

In the context, Amit Chandra validated Premji's statement and added that it is difficult to build trust without having eye contact. "We have to figure out what technology can be an enabler and provide people the necessary flexibility and we have to figure out what the right balance is in terms of work from home, the flexibility and yet ensure that people come back to work. Also, the technology industry doesn't really fully get how much the rest of the world has come back to normal," he noted.

Teena Jose

News Desk Reporter with Entrepreneur India

Teena is a post graduate in financial journalism. She has an avid interest in content creation, digital media and fashion.
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