The way we work has changed dramatically over the past couple of years, but most people agree it has changed for the better! The return to work will not be easy for everyone, and employers must consider individual differences and opinions on the process. There are certain things we need to embrace and work on to adapt to the new normal. Here are 6 top ways we are adapting:
1. Becoming More Open To Ideas
Management should never make all of the decisions relating to a workplace. The employees are usually more involved in the day-to-day working life, so everybody needs to have a say! The staff know what works for them and what is best for the company to run efficiently.
The future of work does not look the same for everyone and every company (especially regarding hybrid/remote working). This is why taking everybody’s opinions into account can be so beneficial! Fresh ideas from a different perspective can bring positive changes. Hybrid working transformation programmes allow an unbiased view to help your workplace embrace this new way of working. These unbiased views result in your team working together towards the same goal, whether based in the office or working from home.
2. Embracing Hybrid Working
Although the government is ending the work from home guidance, most workplaces are giving employees a choice, and rightly so! Work from the office, from home, from anywhere that suits you best! As long as the work gets done, employees should have a right to decide where they work, which is why hybrid working is such a hot topic right now. Working from home suits some people, but others can find it lonely and struggle to stay motivated, so having the option to go into the office is crucial for some.
Hybrid working means being flexible, trusting, and considerate. Tech firm Ocado has recently announced their staff can work from abroad for one month a year, saying they want to offer a ‘balance and choice’ in how staff work. This new way of working allows staff who have family abroad to visit without using annual leave. More companies should take a leaf out of their book; happier staff make a more productive workforce!
3. Becoming More Flexible
For far too long, employees have been held to a rigid ‘law’ where employers monitor strict working hours, usually from 9 till 5. This way of working does not fit with modern life, and it needs to be left behind. One of the reasons it just doesn’t work is that the man of the house used to work these 40 hour weeks whilst the woman stayed home, completed housework, and provided childcare. However in many modern day relationships with both partners working full-time, there is often not enough time to meet housework and childcare requirements.
Allowing staff to decide their working hours means work-life balance, and people can work around childcare or personal needs. Some workplaces are even allowing unlimited holidays, which has been proven to work! Companies such as Netflix, LinkedIn, and Kickstarter have proven unlimited annual leave is possible. Not only possible, but it is a ‘great perk to get great minds through the front door’.
4. Introducing Creativity to The Workplace
The World Economic Forum listed creativity as the third most essential skill for 2020 and beyond; this is compared to being tenth in 2015. This shows how important it is for employers to introduce creative aspects into the workplace and encourage creativity from employees. Creative workshops are a great way to bring this perspective and help your team engage with their creative side. Engaging in this way can be difficult, especially in industries that are not creative. Hence, taking part in a workshop is a great way to do so effectively.
Incorporating communal areas for staff to get together and mindmap is crucial for people who are returning to the workplace full or part-time. Pressure-free mind mapping in a relaxed environment is one of the easiest and most effective ways to encourage creativity. To create a stimulating atmosphere, use colour and lighting. Consider the biophilic design, the use of natural aspects inside. Workers in offices with natural elements, such as greenery and natural light, are 15% more creative!
5. Remaining Patient Throughout Change
It will take a while for people to get used to the ‘new normal’, and some will find it easier than others. Throughout the process of the return to work, we need to consider every individual situation. Some people may struggle with the return to the office and may be anxious about being around people. On the other hand, some staff may be desperate to get back into the office!
Workplaces must work together to support each other and do what they can to make the new way of working easy for everybody. It might take a while to work out the best way for your team to return to work. The process could be a case of trial and error; a hybrid kickstarter hour can help you navigate this journey.
6. Building Trust Between Colleagues
Strict time regimes at work are not based on trust. One of the keys to any relationship is trust, so this should always be the same between work colleagues! If you trust your employees to manage their own time, they are likely to trust you. People often say ’employees don’t leave companies, they leave managers’. Building this trust has never been more critical with the changed return to work.
If, as a boss, you have a flexible schedule for yourself, the option to work from wherever you want…but you don’t allow these options for your staff, this isn’t a fair example. It lacks trust and creates a hostile atmosphere in the workplace. Stick to the age-old saying; treat others how you would like to be treated!
Vibrant Thinking Can Help You Adapt to The New Normal
We provide workshops, courses, and transformation programmes to help you and your team return to work in the most efficient way possible. We can help you manage a hybrid working team by giving a fresh perspective and trustworthy, tailored advice. Contact us today to find out more!