With the influx of covid-19 vaccines being transported to different parts of the world as you are reading this, it would take almost 1 to 2 years before any resemblances of pre-covid days happenings were to occur. Large corporations have taken bold steps to announce full remote working arrangements till next year, and some others have adopted the hybrid working arrangements. The hybrid working arrangement differs from countries due to the levels of dorscon and the restrictions put in place by the individual governments. With the countries that have allowed for gatherings, we would see an arrangement of at least 30-50% of the workforce being present on alternate weeks. This means that leaders and team members would need to adjust to the new arrangements as the hybridized workforce becomes the norm.
The skills needed for Hybrid Working are as follows :
1) Effective Time Management
Balancing time between working at home and commuting to office is crucial to effective time management, the shift in time periods (i.e. wake up, meal time, meetings, time to prepare) would need adjustments especially as humans prefer to have a routine. As such, the ability to prioritise daily tasks effectively would help with hybrid working. Being able to be flexible in re-arranging tasks would definitely be a great advantage. Here is a tool for you to help with time management.
2) Self Management
Hybrid workforce arrangement pushes a strong need for employees and leaders to be able to manage themselves, self management is defined as management of or by oneself; the taking of responsibility for one's own behaviour and well-being. This means that the hybrid worker needs to take ownership over their behaviours to be able to get the job done well. This also means the hybrid worker is one who will voice out when the need arises especially when they are feeling overwhelmed or overworked.
In self management, hybrid workers need to be able to things without being told to do so, taking the initiative which requires the drive and motivation to keep heading towards success. Initiative requires self belief, because you need resilience and motivation to go out of your way to solve problems or do things without being reminded or asked.
3) Digital Awareness
Having the exposure to various digital and virtual tools to make communication with your team members seamless is a strength needed for hybrid workforce arrangement.
Some questions to get the thought process going: How would you ensure that there is collaboration on a project when half your team is virtual and the other is physical? How do we ensure that no one is left out? Do we discuss with physical team and get virtual team onboard later? Is there a program we can all use to have live interaction?
Now, as you can tell, the emergence of new digital tools may be the answer to the new problems that you are facing. Example : Microsoft teams has a sharing feature where multiple people can work on the same document , however, the collaboration may become messy and pointless as everyone will have their own interpretation of how things should be done.
A strong hybrid worker is one who is digitally apt and knows how to utilise various digital tools to solve the problem faced by the individuals.
Here are 6 questions to help guide you in determining the appropriate digital tools or platform :
Does your project require any form of collaboration?
Are there any parts of project that require members to collaborate concurrently?
Do you need any voice or video recording for data collection?
Is there a need to gather opinions from multiple stakeholders?
Do members need to have online access to information?
Is there any automation that is necessary?
As with all businesses and the global economy, rapid changes drive innovation which in turn increase the demand for specific type skills. The hybrid worker should not be seen as an invincible person ; he/she is more of an organized solutions provider who has the ability to bring in solutions from different disciplines.
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