The past few years have torpedoed the old 9-to-5 commute to sit under your boss’ thumb, and some executives still cannot get over the paradigm shift.

Steven Covey, author of The Speed of Trust and Trust & Inspire, struck a chord with me when he noted that companies are struggling with the biggest change necessary for insightful leadership in the new world of hybrid work: They must let go of command-and-control leadership and move toward “trust and inspire.”

Still, from Amazon to BlackRock to Apple to Disney to JPMorgan to Twitter (excuse me, X), CEOs are requiring, asking and ordering their charges back to the office. And those that allow remote or hybrid schedules are having trouble with the trust part.

“If you implement a hybrid approach to work, but you still don’t trust your people – and you fill it with things like productivity software that looks and feels to the employees like surveillance software – that screams distrust,” Covey told a recent Chief Executive magazine conference. “The new way of working will be undermined by that lack of trust.”

That software also undermines the benefits of working from home. If surveillance chains employees to their “home” desk from 9-to-5, they still cannot see their daughter’s soccer game, their son’s piano recital, have lunch with their spouse, take care of their children when they’re sick.

You’re going to have to try a new way of leadership. Covey has some good advice on that front: Model the openness and understanding you want to see, clarify expectations and establish accountability up front – behaviors that will lead to inspiration.

Covey, of course, is really talking about white-collar workers. Elon Musk, for all his bombast, makes a valid point when he says: “You’re gonna work from home and you’re gonna make everyone else who made your car come work in the factory? You’re gonna make people who make your food that gets delivered – they can’t work from home? The people that come fix your house? They can’t work from home, but you can? Does that seem morally right? That’s messed up.”

What Musk does not understand is how he actually makes the case for developing family-friendly policies that provide optionality for your entire employee base, two of the buckets in my three-bucket approach to reinventing work.

The employee on the factory line, the warehouse worker and the stock clerk deserve the same “trust and inspire” consideration as the laptop class.