Workplaces are “complex social ecosystems, just like any other places that humans inhabit,” and missing that social dimension of work is central to our angst, explains Perel, who hosts a podcast called How’s Work?

More than an amalgam of ergonomic furniture and meeting rooms, an office, for some of us, is a place that can fulfill our deepest longing. “What do people want from work today? Belonging, meaning, continuity, community,” Perel explains. “Basically, they’re trying to work like they’re trying to love—the things that traditional religion and community used to provide for them. These are existential needs. The office is about that.”

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