🧑‍💻 The RTO push is dead

PLUS what AI thinks remote workers will look like in 25 years, best cities work workations, Peru's nomad visa, and more

Hey Insiders,

Hope you’re enjoying the holiday season so far! I have some big announcements to make in the new year that will affect this newsletter (it’s all good things don’t worry) but for now let’s dive into this week’s hottest topics!

Today in 3min 47sec we cover:

  • 🧑‍💻 What AI thinks remote workers will look like in 25 years

  • 💰 The company paying employees to hang out

  • 🌴 The best cities for a holiday workcation

  • 💀 Why RTO is dead

  • 🤗 And much more!

Let’s dive in 👇


This company pays its employees to socialize outside of work

Ethena, an all-in-one compliance training platform, is experimenting with a new engagement strategy - paying employees to hang out outside of work.

Before COVID, Ethena budgeted for a 50-person office in Brooklyn, but during the pandemic, employees moved away and the company went fully remote.

Now the office budget is being utilized to give every employee $100 per month to cover in-person hangs.

Not only can the money be used for anything (drinks, movies, going to the nail salon together) but employees can save up to 3 months for more costly outings. They’re even allowed to pool their money together if they really want to go big!

The thesis behind this strategy is that instead of trying to come up with 1 activity that everyone can bond around, you allow individual employees to select what to do with coworkers based on their shared interests.

Personally, I love this idea, what do you think?


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The return to office push is ‘totally dead’, experts say

It’s been almost 4 years since the pandemic shook up every aspect of how we live, but many things have returned to normal. One thing that hasn’t - office use.

Earlier this year, CEOs of many companies began to announce mandatory RTO in an attempt to force the way we work back to where it was before 2020. And for a while it seemed like it might work.

Publications like Business Insider and Forbes ran pieces announcing that remote work was dead.

But the reality is very different.

“The data all shows the RTO push is over,” remote work expert Nicholas Bloom of Stanford University told Yahoo News. “Totally dead.”

A recent survey of 1000+ executives who announced a RTO policy found that 80% regret their initial RTO policy.

And yes, some workers have returned to the office, but the hopes of 2019-style work habits have eroded.

Bloom and others say that the future for most is hybrid, with some employees working in the office 2 to 3 days a week


AI predicts what WFH employees will look like in 25 years.

Meet Susan - an AI-created visual representation of the remote worker in 25 years, or so says job discovery platform Direct Apply

The main culprits of this future image, according to Direct Apply, are reduced social interaction, lack of proper exercise, hunched shoulders, and digital eyestrain.

Of course, the internet is incredible and immediately pulled apart this argument

Many noted that as remote workers they were able to use the time normally spent commuting to work out, and that WFH has allowed them to have more control over their diet.

In addition, many of the causes don’t magically disappear if you return to the office. Workers will still be working on computers and will have to deal with bad posture and eye strain.

One person on social media even joked that “this is how most people in the office look now,”

My bet is that even the folks at Direct Apply don’t believe this and just used it as a funny way to get some attention, and it certainly is funny!

But I’m curious what you think about this topic, if you’re a remote worker do you feel like you’re healthier now than when you worked in an office?


  • 🎄 December named Remote Worker Wellness Month by BrightBreaks, a virtual well-being platform.

  • 🧳 Workcations. A recent survey of 400 US cities found the best places for a holiday workcation with Fort Lauderdale, Florida topping the list.

  • 👔 Beyond the office. SoWork launches a new competitor in the virtual workplace space to help solve Zoom fatigue

  • 🇵🇪 Peru announces nomad visa. Holders will be able to stay in the South American country for up to a year with possibility of extension. Release date is not yet available

  • 🤖 Google Gemini. The much-awaited competitor to ChatGPT is here and the AI race now really heating up


Dec 7-13: Nomad Island Fest [📍 Madeira, Portugal] - Learn from world-class industry experts on topics like mindset, marketing, tech, wealth & health.

Know of any other events within the next 4-6 months? Reply to this email and let me know!


Looking for a job that’s not just remote, but that you can work from anywhere in the world? We’ve done the heavy lifting for you. Check out these awesome WFA positions 👇

⭐️ Business Advisor @ Empire Flippers

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That’s it for today! Thanks for reading Remote Insider, let me know what you thought of today’s email, and make sure to comment if there’s anything you want us to cover in future emails 👇

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Have a great weekend!

Cheers 🍻

Today’s email was written by Mitko Karshovski