09:50 GMT19 April 2021
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    Citigroup is among the numerous companies revising their work culture in response to changes brought about by the coronavirus. Some firms like Ford Motor Company have told their employees that they can continue to work from home even after the pandemic ends.

    Citigroup CEO Jane Fraser has encouraged the company's employees to take vacations, Bloomberg reported citing an internal memo it obtained. According to the outlet, the measure is part of the bank's strategy on improving the physical and mental health of employees, which has been affected by the pandemic. Fraser banned video calls on Fridays, calling the day "Zoom-free" and told staff to avoid holding work-related meetings during their free time.

    "I know, from your feedback and my own experience, the blurring of lines between home and work and the relentlessness of the pandemic workday have taken a toll on our well-being. It's simply not sustainable", Fraser wrote in the memo. 

    Hybrid Workplace

    Fraser, who became the first woman to head one of Wall Street's major banks, also announced that the majority of employees will have hybrid roles in the future – working in the office at least three days a week and as many as two days from home.
    However, according to the memo, for some jobs it is important to be in the office as it is necessary for collaboration, mentoring young employees, and competitiveness.

    "We want our people to feel an attachment to our firm, a sense of pride about serving our clients, and a duty to protect the financial system. That only happens when we are together -- and as we have all experienced, loneliness is not a great feeling", Fraser said in the memo.

    Citigroup is not the only major company attempting to revise its work culture. Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon vowed to do a better job of keeping young employees out of the office on Saturday, while Jefferies Financial Group promised to reward employees with fitness perks. According to the Harvard Business School, 16 percent of employees in the United States will be allowed to continue to work from home after the pandemic ends.


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