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Three ways to maintain productivity in the hybrid workplace
Gradually, more and more remote workers are heading back into the office. Over three in five Canadians say that they want to return to their physical workplace or office, according to a recent KPMG survey. But there are still many people who prefer to work from home at least a few days per week.
While the evolving hybrid cultures will differ from place to place, company leaders share a common concern – how to maintain high productivity levels from all their team members, regardless of their working location. They wonder if employees will continue to collaborate and be as effective in a new hybrid environment of on-site and virtual workers.
The good news is, according to a Gartner report, 55% of employees with flexible work options are high performers. But hybrid workers will still face barriers that can affect their morale and derail their productivity.
Your goal as a leader is to create a hybrid culture where everyone on your team is fully engaged and committed to doing what they do best every day – a culture that maximizes productivity and employee well-being. To be successful and effective over the long term, you need to build sustainability into your approach to a new hybrid workplace.
Core ingredients of productivity
What makes a productive and efficient hybrid team? There are three key ingredients: mindset, time management and focus. Let’s take a look at what’s involved and what you as a manager can do to make the most of these key components.
Leadership always begins with mindset. Your mindset as a leader and the mindset of your team members helps determine if your team is willing and able to explore new strategies, seek help from others and capitalize on setbacks. In the hybrid environment, leaders need to develop a new mindset to help drive change for the company.
There are four basic types of mindset: growth, fixed, inclusion and disruption mindset. The growth mindset is the one that’s most powerful for you to adopt as a manager. It involves believing that the individuals on your team can develop, learn and grow. Employees with a growth mindset strive for constant improvement as they believe their talents can be developed through hard work, good strategies, and input from others. Because they put more energy into learning, they tend to achieve more.
2. Time management
Time management is integral to productivity. It’s especially important today as many of us have more work to do than time to do it. Productivity isn’t about doing more things – it’s about doing the right things at the right time. Employees who don’t manage their time effectively can create bottlenecks and delays for their teammates. Especially in hybrid workforces where people may be working on different schedules. Not receiving what they need at the right time can affect team performance.
Handling email overload is a major time management issue for almost everyone. It’s a vital link for information sharing among hybrid team members that you have to stay on top of. But it’s so easy to get bogged down sifting through all the other information, news, tasks and requests in the never-ending inbox.
Most of us have heard about the “touch it once” rule for email, but how many of us do it consistently … or at all? The idea is that as soon as you touch an email, you act on it. Decide on the spot whether to do it, delete it, delegate it or defer it. And then be done with it and move on to the next one.
The most productive leaders of hybrid teams are able to focus on what’s important without getting distracted. They pay attention to the needs of all their employees and ensure they can share pertinent information in a timely manner to everyone, whether they’re virtual or on-site. Leaders focus on being engaged, fully present and keeping everyone in the loop through consistent and often digital communication.
Focus is also a matter of maintaining an overall perspective of what’s important for the business or the task at hand. Keeping the big picture in mind can help you avoid getting sidetracked by any of the nagging little issues that can pop up in a day and demand your attention.
For organizations that want to continue to maintain high levels of productivity with a hybrid workforce, the first step is to establish hybrid work policies that will help everyone on the team transition to a hybrid environment. This may involve employees changing their mindsets, embracing new strategies and technology for time management, and focusing on new ways of working to keep all team members in the loop.
At Virtual Team Builders we specialize in training leaders and managers how to enable virtual and on-site teams to work together successfully in a hybrid workplace. Our training course “Boosting Productivity in a Hybrid Environment”, is designed to give you the skills you need to create more productive, high-performance teams. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
For more insights into how to effectively manage hybrid teams, read New Strategies to Manage Hybrid Teams for Success.
Want personalized advice for how to take your hybrid team to the next level? Complete our Hybrid Team Performance Survey and get a FREE 45-minute consultation with our training team!
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