Embracing a hybrid work environment
It will require changing the way we think of work in subtle and not so subtle ways
The COVID-19 pandemic may have forced the hand of companies around the world to implement remote work, but it’s viability long-term has never been more clear, or more studied.
For companies that decide there’s no need (or benefit) to going back to the old way of working, but do not want to embrace a fully remote work environment, creating a successful, long term hybrid workforce will require changing the way we think of work in subtle and not so subtle ways.
The following are five tips companies should consider if they want to ‘go hybrid’ as we head into a new year:
- Level the playing field between remote and in-person workers. Remote workers must be able to feel like they are an equal part of the team as the office denizens. This goes beyond simply making sure everyone is rowing in the same direction regarding production goals and includes equal footing for promotion tracks and other benefits.
- Understand how your internal communications process actually works. Take a good look at how your company really communicates with one another. If your company relies on the informal communication found around the watercooler to make progress remote employees are going to be at a disadvantage.
- Avoid backsliding into siloes. Necessity is the mother of all invention and the COVID-19 crisis has forced companies to operate with a new level of ingenuity. For many companies, this has resulted in a breaking out of siloed operations and led to more and better collaboration across teams in order to overcome the hurdles the entire company has faced.
- Prepare for real world office needs. Create an environment that allows for the right amount of distraction-free privacy for those who are working in-office and is prepared for the occasional remote worker visiting the office on occasion for important meetings or other team-building opportunities.
- Tap into the remote talent pool. This tip isn’t exclusive to hybrid workforces but could be one of the most powerful things a company can do to excel in a remote work world. Having a remote or hybrid workforce opens your company up to talent pools that were geographically off limits just eight months ago.