Stop the discussion about hybrid working

With this latest lockdown it has become clearer than ever: we will never fully go back to the old way of working (and be happy). The discussion about hybrid working is therefore raging in almost every organization. But that’s the wrong discussion to have.

“If you want to conquer the island, burn your ships,” said Julius Caesar upon the arrival and attack on England some 2,000 years ago. If you don’t, keep the option open to withdraw. By burning your ships you will have to do everything you can to achieve your goal. With a focus on hybrid working, you continue to cling to the old situation in the same way. But even worse, you constantly put yourself in the role of victim, ‘everything was better in the past’.

If the past few years have taught us one thing, it is that the speed of change is only going to increase. Our civilization has grown in the past 100 years from 2 to almost 8 billion people and will continue to grow for a while. If you combine that with the technology that is constantly developing, you can bet that we will see many more changes in the coming years.

The demand changes (for example from meat to meat substitutes), the speed (from 9 to 5 to 24/7), how you purchase products (from in-store, to home delivery within 10 minutes), our expectations of products (from broiler chicken to Better Leven Keurmerk) and also where you work (from gray office garden to colorful coffee shop). All things that will directly or indirectly affect your (way of) work. The sooner you train yourself to become more agile, the better your chances of survival. And grow.

So don’t think about how you can maintain as much as possible. Grab the chance to completely turn it around. Burn the ships behind you. Start with a clean slate and design the new way of working from there.

How? Let colleagues think about how best to organize their working day. Take into account childcare, picking up a package, exercising and preferably all this outside the traffic jams. This immediately contributes to a better live/life balance.

Determine together where you can work best on which job and match tech with task. Plan a concentration job at home, consult by telephone outside on foot, small jobs at a flex desk or coffee shop. Learn from each other at the office or remote location, with an online whiteboard such as Miro or pen and paper. In addition to flexibility, determining this together also provides a sense of autonomy. Both contribute to higher motivation and involvement.

While research for corona showed that managers were mainly afraid of less involvement and lower productivity of their employees, during the lockdown it turned out that they had to teach employees to work less hard and not continuously. So invest in training your colleagues. Give them the tools and insights to optimally work remotely. Focus on structure and clear internal communication.

Use the office for which it is best used: showroom, meeting place, inspiration. Do you have any space left? With the increased demand for flexible workplaces, you can fill them again in no time.

The biggest challenge is therefore not to cling to the current location and to let go of the processes. Instead, focus on the desired outcome. Those who will do that best will be the ultimate winners. Simply put, letting go builds confidence. Trust promotes well-being. Higher well-being drives higher performance and productivity. Higher productivity makes letting go easier.

So let go of the discussion about hybrid working and grab the chance to reinvent yourself now.

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