Guest Contributor

How do you manage a hybrid team?

By | John Smith

The Coronavirus pandemic forced a lot of changes in the entire world. There is no escaping the unavoidable and prominent effects that it brings with it. A pandemic of this scale literally brought the world to its knees.

Like everything else, businesses all over the world took a hit too. Companies had to shut down, start laying off employees, cut down on costs, temporary suspensions, and so on were just a few things that we got to witness.

But as humans are, we always do get back on our feet. We often tend to come back stronger. With the new work-from-home routine that the offices had to settle into, the world saw a new method and way of working for the people. It actually turned out to be a win-win situation for many. Those who did not see the silver lining at first slowly saw that it was a start to something new and was obviously a global change. Working from home resulted in something called the ‘hybrid team’ in offices and businesses. Speculations, suggestions, criticism, and so on followed through shortly.

What is a hybrid team?

Well, as we have already discussed, after the corona pandemic there was a huge change in the way offices functioned. Due to the social distancing norms offices could not be held under a roof and the employees were told to work from home.

As things started normalizing a lot of companies and people saw the benefits of working from home. The company had to invest less in the running costs and the employee got the luxury of working from home. Of course, this did not mean that the employees never showed up to the office.

A new culture rose out of this trend called the hybrid work. This simply refers to the fact that the employees could now work from the office as well as from home. There is no fixed rule that says how much time one has to spend in the office and home. It is up to every company and in some companies it is up to the employees to lay out the segregation of time spent in office and home.

This type of team is called a hybrid team.

As interesting as this sounds, this obviously has some limitations and challenges to it. A huge challenge that the company owners faced was regarding the management of these hybrid teams which obviously proved to be a nightmare since all the people were not accessible under the same roof at the same time of the day.

So what could be done?

Set common goals for all

Since all the employees are not under one roof it may get very harrowing to give various tasks with different deadlines to everyone. Instead of doing that, let the whole team know about a single deadline and how they will be able to work and coordinate better. You can do this by rolling out emails or using advanced techniques like desk booking systems in order to help employees work seamlessly in a hybrid manner.

Promote Intensive Communication

Again, the major change in the functioning of offices in today’s date is because of the work from home engagement. This has made it a task for the managers and owners to communicate efficiently with their employees. Since they are not under one roof at the same time, coordination between various branches of the office also gets hampered. By making use of desktop slack and other such softwares your employees can easily manage to stay in contact. Using technology to hold the office together at a time like this is the only viable option.

Regular get-togethers

To make sure that the employees do not start forgetting the importance of a team or simply the work culture, it is very important to plan events and normal working days where all the employees come together. It can be a casual get-together like a small office party or even a normal working day where no employee would be working from home and everyone would be in the office like in old times.

Be mindful of overworking employees

Since all the people working in the company are not in eyesight and most of the communication is being done virtually, overworking them becomes a very common activity. You as a manager or the owner may not be able to tell that an employee is feeling stressed or is feeling overworked. It is a rare occurrence that the employee would be able to communicate such feelings. Thus it is up to the HR or the manager to closely monitor the stress levels and to stay in touch with all the employees to watch out for the signs of overworking.

Execute a reward system

How do you make sure that employees are working with proper dedication? Since they are not really sitting in front of you all the time you will have to get a reward system in place so that they never reduce their enthusiasm for their work. A fair and prompt reward system can work wonders and is very necessary for a hybrid model.

Hybrid teams are probably the future of all businesses and companies. It is inevitable and also might be a boon for many. Managing them is not difficult but there have to be some changes in the management if one wants to make sure things stay stable.

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