Transitions are afoot, as many organizations implement plans to bring workers back to the office, now that many states and municipalities are reducing COVID-19 restrictions. Most organizations are going to offer a hybrid model moving forward, with some people in the office at least part of the time, while others work from home. For hybrid work models. I’d suggest these best practices gleaned from other organizations’ experiences:

  • If your direct reports need to be there, perhaps leaders should be too
  • Establish “core-days” like the idea of core hours – set days when all staff are to be in the office
  • Set minimum requirements and allow maximum flexibility
  • Hold people accountable for results, not being at the office

One client has divided folks into four categories:

  • On site – Work is performed at the organization’s site only
  • Hotel or “hot-desk” – Shared space at the office(s) when they need to be there
  • Mobile – No permanent “home,” however expected to operate at different facilities, vendors and/or clients
  • Permanently remote – Work from home

Managing people remotely is no different from managing people at the office. It is just that leaders may find it easier when they are across the hall. Regardless of people’s location, leaders must create alignment around:

  • What are the necessary RESULTS?
  • An understanding of the IMPACT or ripple effects of the key results – the “why”
  • Any specific DO’s or BOUNDARIES?
  • BEST PRACTICES if necessary
  • KPI’s (key performance indicators) – how the result will be measured
  • When you will CHECK-IN to ensure progress and support any issues or obstacles
  • See more on delegation here

The “all clear” has not sounded yet for the pandemic. So, set clear expectations for COVID safety, including but not limited to:

  • Protocols for those who have been vaccinated vs those who haven’t
  • Customer-facing mask policies

Only schedule meetings when you have to, and be clear about how meetings will be conducted:

  • When the majority are going to be remote, suggest everyone “zoom in”
  • When the majority are in the room, be aware of keeping those who are remote, engaged. What side-bar conversations might they be missing, and how can you keep everyone on the same page?
  • When all participants are remote, require cameras “on” to maximize engagement

For more on the hybrid model, returning to the office, legal issues, etc. check out this blog from Rose Street Advisors’ Fun Socks HR Blog.

What are your plans and questions as it relates to a return to the office? Comment below or message us.

Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash