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A hybrid work model describes a blend of remote, on-the-go, and in-office workers with complete autonomy to work wherever they want. As long as the work gets done and the lines of communication remain open, business owners and managers are happy to give their employees this freedom. 

However, for all its benefits, like employee happiness and increased productivity, business owners and employees still have a few challenges to overcome. Here are some of the most common ones – and what you can do about them. 

Having a Central Hub

Business owners often opt for serviced office suites when they identify the need for a central hub in which everyone can gather (both digitally and virtually). While your team might spend the majority of their time working apart in various locations, there may come a time when you need everyone in the same place to work through the intricacies of a new project. 

A serviced office or even a boardroom facility you can hire on an hourly basis might tick that box. When it’s centrally located and has all the technology you need for a successful meeting, it can be an ideal solution to your problem. 

Communication

When your employees work from all different locations, it’s only natural for there to be a small amount of disconnect, at least early on, when everyone’s finding their feet. Water cooler chats look a little different, and some people take to technology at different speeds. 

Combating communication woes can come down to time and trial-and-error as you explore the best communication channels for everyone. For example, in-office workers might be more than happy to send emails and talk on the phone, while remote employees might be satisfied with regular Zoom calls

However, multiple communication avenues can lead to confusion and information being lost, so consider using team platforms everyone can rely on for information sharing and socializing. 

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Teamwork

Teamwork looks much different in a hybrid work model than in an in-office one. Rather than everyone being able to sit around a table to discuss issues and upcoming projects, you often have to ensure any in-office discussions are relayed in emails and phone calls to out-of-office workers. 

Sometimes, the effort required to keep everyone in the loop can see a few key people being brought into decision-making processes and the rest left out. If you’re concerned about this, make a plan to prioritize teamwork. 

Once again, you might rely on team platforms like Slack or write down all critical information for the week and merge every employee into a weekly group call. The important part is that you’re able to ensure everyone is on the same page. 

Company Culture

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit and hundreds of thousands of office workers began working from home, employers were pleased to see that productivity levels remained high. Employees understood their roles, knew their colleagues, and felt comfortable with the company culture. 

However, when newcomers are hired as remote employees, they don’t always get a chance to learn the company culture. They may not have a close relationship with their colleagues or understand the workplace dynamics, and this can create challenges. 

You can combat this problem by providing in-office training, meet-and-greets with other staff members, and frequent catch-ups for professional and personal conversations.   

Hybrid work environments benefit employers and employees alike, but they aren’t without their challenges. By bringing your team together, prioritizing company culture, and opening the lines of communication, you should be better positioned to manage the most common problems hybrid workplaces face.

Angela Martin

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