With so many lockdowns going into effect last year, working from home became essential. Tech companies, like Apple, were some of the first to implement plans to make that possible. But, at least one CEO believes in-person work is still essential, and hopes it comes back soon.

As you can guess, that chief executive is Tim Cook. Cook recently spoke with People about various topics, but it was mostly about returning to a normal routine some day. For Apple at least, Cook says that “it’s still very important to physically be in touch with one another because collaboration isn’t always a planned activity”. Which certainly bears some truth to it, considering some great ideas simply formulate from natural conversation and development.

Working at a distance, where getting in touch with someone usually requires a call or a planned meeting, may not always make that possible.

Collaboration is one part, sure, but innovation is another, according to Cook:

Innovation isn’t always a planned activity. It’s bumping into each other over the course of the day and advancing an idea that you just had. And you really need to be together to do that.

As noted in the original report, Apple’s floor plan in the “spaceship” campus is open. Which may not seem like the best possible scenario, with how the last year has gone. However, Cook admits that Apple is still working on the details, even if he’s bullish on the possibility of returning to in-person work. When asked how Apple will manage moving forward, Cook’s reply is straight to the point:

We’re still figuring that out, to be honest with you.

So, Apple’s CEO is more than happy to look forward to things going back to “normal”, or something close to that. Which certainly makes sense. When that will actually become a reality, though, remains to be seen.