Disney CEO Bob Iger is cracking down on remote work as he attempts to lead a turnaround effort at the struggling entertainment giant.
Iger, who returned as Disney’s CEO in late November, told hybrid corporate employees they will be required to work in the office at least four days per week beginning on March 1.
“As I’ve been meeting with teams throughout the company over the past few months, I’ve been reminded of the tremendous value in being together with the people you work with,” Iger wrote in a memo obtained by CNBC.
“As you’ve heard me say many times, creativity is the heart and soul of who we are and what we do at Disney,” Iger added. “And in a creative business like ours, nothing can replace the ability to connect, observe, and create with peers that comes from being physically together, nor the opportunity to grow professionally by learning from leaders and mentors.”
Iger is aiming to bolster Disney’s results after a dismal year in which his predecessor Bob Chapek faced both internal and external criticism over a series of business missteps and PR gaffes. Shares of the Burbank, Calif.-based company have plunged nearly 40% over the last 12 months.
Iger had hinted at a potential update to Disney’s work policies during a town hall meeting with employees in late November. At the time, the executive stopped short of mandating a return to the office, even as he nudged employees to start working more on site.
“I worry long term about the negative impact on people who have decided not to spend as much time at the office,” Iger said, according to Bloomberg. “I’m going to spend a lot of time here, and I hope that it’s not lonely.”
The Post has reached out to Disney for further comment.
Disney will join many other leading firms, including Tesla and Snap, who have ordered employees back to the office for a fixed number of days as the COVID-19 pandemic wanes.
The return-to-office push is the latest sign of Iger’s plans to shake up the Mouse House.
Iger previously revealed his intent for a major internal reshuffling at Disney that would re-emphasis the power of creative executives at the company – some of whom had reportedly lost confidence in Chapek prior to his exit.
He also told Disney employees that the company’s hiring freeze would remain in place while he examines costs at the company.
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