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The One Step You Shouldn’t Skip To Encourage Hybrid Collaboration
Natalie Chan, Marketing Manager
Here’s the simple truth. The success of your return to the office plan and the way you approach the next phase of work will determine the level of employee job satisfaction in your company. It will play a pivotal role in attracting and retaining talent in the future.
You could rally your troops back to the office in the hope of reviving collaboration and productivity but you know that’s not likely to work. Too much has changed.
Most US and UK employees anticipate easier collaboration (60%) and better productivity (52%) after returning to the office – provided it caters to their needs and creates opportunities for those watercooler chats that leave them happier and energized for an hour and more afterward. A lack of chance encounters and in-person meetings will leave your people struggling to build trust and strengthen the emotional bonds that are essential to effective collaboration and wellbeing, particularly in a hybrid workplace.
Employees may quit if you can’t offer flexible working
If you don’t allow your people the flexibility of personal work routines, you might lose them – or face a rise in anxiety and depression among employees alongside the resulting fall in company productivity. Yet, with flexibility comes the challenge of creating and maintaining an inclusive culture that doesn’t risk remote employees feeling like second class citizens.
The solution? You already know it.
Establish a people-first hybrid workplace that promotes natural collaboration
What many don’t realize is – it starts with the return to the office plan. Using it merely to take care of the logistics and safety precautions of opening the office doors would be a missed opportunity. Instead, allow it to build the foundation for a hybrid workplace that:
Gives people ownership of their workday – think flexibility of choosing when they come in, how often, and where they sit; and a workplace app that ensures a seamless desk and room booking experience).
Enables personal and team cadences with a balance of synchronous and asynchronous collaboration. They will be the difference between presenteeism – being in the office as a performative measure but working less efficiently due to exhaustion, illness, etc. – and joyful productivity at work.
Establishes inclusive hybrid meetings as the new norm, including desk booking software that focuses on facilitating collaboration by showing your colleagues’ cadences or allowing short- and long-term group bookings.
Creates a test-and-optimize process for continuously improving the workplace experience without relying on countless employee surveys.
The key is in the right mix of all the essential ingredients.
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