Many of us did not expect to experience remote work the way we did over the last year. With this change came not only new ways to view the workplace, but research regarding this adjustment. About 80% of workers in industrialized countries would like to work from home a good portion of the time. As 2020 continued, those statistics also showed that remote work proved to be incredibly productive for most workers. Though effectiveness was obvious, workers also appreciated, and missed, the interaction an office provides.
After a year of research and discussion, the hybrid workplace was created.
A hybrid workplace design is an effective choice for businesses when clear communication occurs and steps toward success are followed. A hybrid workplace is a mixture of in-office work and remote work within a business. Some offices give employees the choice of where they wish to work while others have a set amount of in-office days. No matter how a workplace decides to implement these hybrid workplace trends, it’s critical certain changes are embraced and steps are followed.
After a year of Zoom meetings and email, it’s clear working with new, innovative technology isn’t going anywhere. Even though some of these new systems are exciting and beneficial, they can also be intimidating. Feelings of anxiety may happen for those who aren’t familiar with newer technology. Working collaboratively with one another during in-office time provides everyone with more confidence moving forward in a hybrid environment.
Mix of Emotions
While some people like remote work, others work much more effectively in an office setting. Employees with high anxiety or learning disorders could find the transition difficult if they prefer one workplace over the other. It makes sense emotions could be intense during a transition like the one many of us are facing after the COVID-19 pandemic. Expressing your emotions to others and working to adjust negative emotions into positive ones is a great first step in creating a safe hybrid office design.
Parents have been faced with a lot of workspace and family changes over the last year. Between working from home with children running around to getting back to an in-office setting, the lifestyle adjustments are obvious. On top of family changes, we all work differently and have unique personalities. Some of us miss office socialization while others love the solitude of working alone. Introverts and extroverts may have different opinions regarding a hybrid workplace design; taking every opinion into account helps accommodate as many people as possible.
Steps to Success
Success starts with communication. This is even more critical for those venturing into hybrid workplace design. Form a realistic communication plan with meetings where everyone is present and welcome to openly share their thoughts. When meetings are collaborative and everyone is involved, you can support one another on a more personal level.
Incorporate In-Person Learning
When communication is effective and you work well together, better work is done. Scheduling more in-person learning can make more successful work happen. Incorporating a few in-office days a week for training or open discussion brings together a hybrid team.
Create a Real Community
Over the last year, many of us have missed real, genuine in-person discussions. Many office workers probably didn’t expect to miss little interactions, such as catching up during a coffee break or chatting over lunch, so much. Creating real moments within your team can be the mood booster your office needs during the day. Adding community-building technology, such as Slack, into your remote routine or making a social hub at your office for in-person days can be the genuine human interactions your hybrid workplace needs to succeed.