Hybrid Working | The importance of motivation
Talking to clients, I’m clear that for the majority of people, the benefits of hybrid working outweigh the negatives. The idea of some time in the office and some time working remotely gives people the balance they need, it reduces the mental and physical effects of commuting; and gives people more time at home, with their family or investing in doing something for themselves.
Robert Half Talent Solutions’ 2022 Salary Guide reveals that 76% businesses are concerned about the impact of hybrid working on company culture and loyalty. I’m also reading more about the changing role of the office now that companies have moved to a more hybrid way of working. It is no longer a place just to work because we have proved over the last 2 years that we can work anywhere. It is now a place to collaborate, to innovate and to have a human connection, businesses are using lots of different incentives to encourage people into the office such as: free breakfasts, guest speakers, events, drinks etc.
One thing managers are really starting to struggle with though is the motivation of their team and morale. Since people were instructed to work from home in March 2020, teams have had to work hard to stay connected socially and to minimise feelings of isolation. On social media, I’ve read about a plethora of different online and offline activities teams have done to try to have some fun whilst working at home – everything from quizzes (sooo many quizzes!), bake-offs, Friday drinks, escape rooms, sports challenges, step count challenges, yoga sessions, mindfulness workshops, guest speakers, cocktail making, chocolate tasting and many more. The problem is we’re running out of ideas and teams don’t want to be sat on Zoom or Teams anymore, we’re now all just a bit fatigued.
So how do you continue to motivate your team when the way we work is now more “normal” and likely to stay this way for the foreseeable future? In my experience, simple is often the best so here are my top motivation tips:
- Your team are all uniquely individual so speak to them individually – set aside an hour a week to chat about how they are feeling? How are they finding hybrid working? What works? What are their challenges? This may highlight some themes which you can look to address. Find out what is important to them and do something connected to that. Ask what you can do to support them, what do they need? – this is a powerful question
- Don’t underestimate the power of the personal touch – send a personal thank you card or small gift to them at home, mark birthdays and other occasions.
- Re-visit your team purpose or motivation, create one if you don’t have one. Your purpose needs to reflect who you are as a team and what you want to achieve. How you do that should be built in – this is a great exercise to do together, in the office. Having a purpose you can all connect to is a significant factor in someone feeling motivated and loyal. How has this changed during the pandemic? What’s different about your team now?
- Communication is key – keeping your team informed of what’s happening in the company, the team or department, will help them feel connected if they aren’t in the office
- Understand your own leadership style – you have the power to motivate people just by how you show up so be aware of your style, its power and its limitations and adapt it to suit the style of those around you
How to keep your team engaged and committed isn’t going to go away and with talk of “The Great Resignation” coming in the new year, it’s naturally of great concern to businesses. However, if you are a great employer, do all the right things, give people opportunities and challenge them, treat them as individuals, create a safe environment for them to be themselves, recognise that this isn’t easy and people have off days and you talk to your teams, then it might not be as bad as you think.
If you would like some help in discovering your leadership style, creating a team purpose, consider your motivation tactics or more simply, evaluating your Team Dynamics, then please do get in touch, we’d love to help.