Variations in employee circumstances, preferences or requirements within the same workforce could lead to the rise of Hybrid Teams, which are teams in which some members work in the one co-located workplace while others work remotely.
JP Morgan Chase led the way calling certain employees back to the office. Now Google’s CEO has alluded that his company will follow suit, even after announcing earlier that employees could work from home until the summer of 2021. Covid-19 cases are rising in 21 states and there still isn’t a vaccine, so many people are probably wondering, why the sudden shift to return to the office?
Researchers at the Martec Group, a market research firm, know why. The research firm conducted an Emotional Intelligence survey of 1,214 individuals across various industries, demographics, and seniority levels and found that employees reporting good mental health has dropped from 62% to a mere 28%. Productivity has also taken a hit. 40% of employees saying their productivity has worsened at home, 42% say they have less focus and 42% also say their stress has increased.
With so many companies facing this move towards a hybrid in-office and work-from-home approach it’s critical for leaders everywhere to get clear on what needs to be implemented, changed and supported.
The good news is that Hybrid Teams aren’t necessarily new. Companies that have leveraged global and satellite teams have been working with Hybrid Teams for years. Though there are some easy lessons to glean from their experiences, there are some unique factors when it comes to Hybrid Teams in today’s climate.
Leaders need to understand and plan for the key factors that will impact Hybrid Teams. Due to the pandemic, there are levels of risk, emotion and compliance that make the management of Hybrid Teams more complex.
The mass and rapid transition to a remote workforce has surfaced these key issues:
Technology & Resource Reliability – Unreliable internet service, equipment that doesn’t match the office space quality and the lack of home space to ensure distraction free work.
Personal Obligations – Individual familial and personal obligations or health concerns are no longer separate from their job obligations.
Rapid Pace of Change – Rules and regulations are shifting constantly from a federal, local and internal company level.
Increased Complexity of Change – Lack of clear-cut solutions that can meet the demands of the various nuances such as health requirements, scheduling, availability and deadlines.
Health Risks & Protocols – Multiple gray areas and evolving guidelines regarding workplaces and in-person interaction.
Ensuring staff feels and is safe by following all health and safety protocols issued at the federal, state, county and company level is going to pose its own challenges. But leaders will also need to level up their skills and approach to ensure they are able to effectively build the synergy and productivity in their blended team.
Chuck Bean, Chief Marketing Officer with the Martec Group shares, “The logistics, though they may be challenging, are easier to solve for because they’re tactical.