Tips for Hybrid Working

The pandemic has brought its fair share of challenges to say the least. One of these has been the abrupt change from working in the office, to working at home, to now returning to the office; albeit gradually. These unforeseen switches in work environments have thrown off routines as we try and navigate around these shifts. Here at JARS, we have tried to make the transition from home to back at work, a smooth one, by allowing one or two days at home – and the rest in the office. This will be reviewed in 12 months in order to accommodate any changes that need to be made. So how do we cope with these modifications?

Communication

Seeing less of each other can cause confusion, misunderstandings and lack of clarity. Ensure you know exactly what is expected of you in regards to your role and responsibilities. Managers should work alongside their team to help them determine their schedules and to set aside time for collaborative work. Having 1-1 check ins is also a great way to ensure deadlines are being met and projects are moving at a good speed. Without regular catchups, it’s easy to fall by the wayside, feel overwhelmed and out of the loop. Transparency and honest conversations are absolutely key.

Technology

Technology is the primal factor to hybrid-working; utilising it to its full extent is vital. It strengthens communication, allows knowledge sharing and minimises gaps between those who are in the office and those who are at home. Ensure all of your data is online so that sharing files and accessing important information is easy and readily available.

Support

Each individual reacts differently to changes in the workplace. Some may breeze through the adjustments, while others struggle. We never know how someone is doing unless we engage and pay attention to what is going on around us. Supporting your team’s wellbeing is imperative to having a successful operation. Managers should be relatively flexible and supportive when it comes to meeting their team’s needs. Ask for regular feedback on how everyone is coping. This could be in a casual email or team coffee breaks or even software that allows employees to rate how they feel that day on a scale of one to ten – it can even be anonymous.

Replicate

Try and match your home set up to your work space within the office. If you can, do this with your physical space as well as your work schedule – this will allow you to be able to get in the zone and work with efficiency. Follow the same routine at home as you would if you were commuting to work. Take the same allocated breaks and finish at a similar time. We are creatures of habit and these identical triggers allow us to go into autopilot and complete tasks as if we are in the office. Don’t be hard on yourself if it’s not perfect – do what you can to the best of your ability. It’s a trying time, but thanks to our super power – neuroplasticity; we always have the ability to adapt and overcome any challenge that’s thrown our way.