The pandemic has changed the way we live and work. Companies now have to adapt to new arrangements in the workplace, chief among which is a hybrid workforce. It is a situation where part of the workforce is at the office while another part is working remotely.
This new arrangement creates new opportunities, but raises new challenges as well. Managers must adapt to a new environment to handle this new situation. Here are a few things they need to avoid if they are to do it successfully.
There is a natural tendency to give more attention to and develop closer ties to those who are present than those who are not. Managers need to be careful that they are not favoring people in the office over those working at home by giving the office residents better assignments or helping them more with projects.
Managers can work to counter this kind of thing by working at home themselves to emphasize its importance to the company’s operation.
Measuring productivity as in the past
The way you measure productivity needs to change as well. You cannot simply do it by the number of hours someone is in the office. People working at home may work a more flexible schedule, starting later or working later.
Planning meetings as you did before the pandemic
As people come back to the office, you may fall back into old habits, such as running your meetings as you did before the pandemic. But obviously, this has to change. You need to consider both physically present employees and those who are attending the meeting remotely and design meetings accordingly.
Not updating policies for the workplace
A hybrid workforce is a new arrangement for companies, and businesses need to develop new policies to cover this new working environment. Managers need to get input from employees to develop the new policies.
Not creating a uniform virtual environment
When everyone works at the office, they are using the same software. But people working remotely may not have the same digital platform that is provided to those at the office. So, the company needs to provide them with the equipment they need to be able to communicate with other workers and share information in various formats.
When people are working remotely, communication becomes even more important. Managers need to develop plans to maintain communication with their remote workers. They can do this by scheduling regular meetings via Zoom, for example, or through daily emails, where workers lay out their assignments and time frames for completing the work.
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