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How to balance flexibility and structure in a hybrid team environment
Understanding the challenges of managing a hybrid team
How to maintain team cohesion
Purpose matters more than ever. People who don’t feel their work contributes to their company’s mission are 630% more likely to quit their jobs than their peers who do.
The way to help employees rediscover the purpose in their work is to make every task and project mission driven. Managers can tie each team member’s work back to the bigger picture of why what they do matters to the world. When assigning tasks, managers should consistently outline answers to: Why is this project important? How will it impact others? How does it fit into the company’s broader mission?
Encourage managers to offer direction, not directions. To help hybrid teams succeed, managers should clearly outline the milestones they’d like their reports to hit — and then let them figure out how to get there.
It feels uncomfortable at first, but by giving your team the freedom to decide their process and work product, you will end up with a better end product.
Hybrid work means it’s easier to miss out on the small moments that make teamwork magical and spark innovation. Google News, for example, was the result of a casual conversation between two employees standing next to each other in line for lunch. In an office, these types of interactions happen naturally; in a remote setting, they fall by the wayside and over time this is highly detrimental.
Nudges can offer an opportunity to spark these moments in a hybrid environment. You could send nudges encouraging employees to “Reach out to a team member today”, for example.
While you should offer your people autonomy, you also shouldn’t shy away from putting a stake in the ground. When it comes to company direction, policies, and values, being clear is the kindest thing you can do — even if your decision is unpopular.
When people know what’s happening, they can make the best choices for themselves. It’s ambiguity that is more punishing.
Use the shift to hybrid as an opportunity to identify cultural gaps, and to set new norms to create a better, stronger culture.
Encourage managers to take notice of who often dominates the conversation in meetings or receives the most recognition for a project’s success. Make the evaluation criteria for projects as clear as possible: The more explicit the rubric, the less room for bias.
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