Getting the balance of hybrid working right
Let’s look at it from an organisational health perspective. Like individual health, organisations tend to be in a state of either improving or declining health – in other words, things are either getting better or worse for the business. And, just as we need to take action to look after our individual health, we must collectively take action to look after the health of our teams and the organisation. That means taking a balanced view of what is good for us as individuals, for our team, and for the organisation. Crucially, that’s a responsibility that everyone in the organisation has, not just the senior leaders. So, the first question for everyone must be, ‘How do I think about my role in the sustainable success of our organisation?’
Why does that matter? Organisations are collections of people, and their success relies on human factors and skills, such as building and sustaining relationships, communication, collaboration, planning and coordination. Getting things done effectively depends on the linkages within and beyond our own team. Our serendipitous connections help build relationships and an understanding of how things get done. When we join an organisation, we subconsciously assimilate information that allows us to ‘fit in’, such as the culture, who’s who, how decisions get made and the nature of communication. That takes more time and effort to absorb in a completely virtual organisation.
So a blend of remote and in-office working could be just what the doctor ordered for a healthy organisation serious about good hybrid working. But how do we know what is the correct balance?