In practice, it seems difficult for organizations to find a balance between work in the office and at home. Now that office work is no longer a necessity, and there is a bill to establish the right to work from home, organizations need to consider a hybrid work interpretation. Because if everyone is working from a different place, how can you get everyone to work together?
And how can you effectively consult with your colleagues, half of whom are at home? How to replace the pat on the back or the worn out appearance? Synergy among employees has an impact on the performance of the organisation. We now know that this synergy can also be created by meeting each other online. How does this look in the new way of working?
You can compare the situation with smoking areas that were used a lot in the distant past. Spontaneous conversations and ideas arose here and the meeting is still being prepared or discussed afterwards. As a non-smoker, there was a possibility that you might have missed this information. You want to avoid this situation by using a hybrid working method. Organizations must ensure that there is a distinction between remote employees and office staff. Improve remote work from home, facilitate communication with colleagues and think about the best way to engage colleagues in the organization, because this does not happen by itself.
“Get rid of the habit of instant booking for half an hour or an hour”
What does meeting look like in a hybrid age? For an important meeting, performance or introductory meeting, preference will likely be given to the actual meeting. We miss out on nonverbal communication online, which plays an important role in feeling connected and in person.
Once the need for an offline meeting has decreased, you can schedule an online meeting. In addition, try not to exceed fifteen to twenty minutes. Get rid of the habit of setting aside a half hour or an hour right away or add small breaks for meetings lasting longer than 45 minutes.
Use the right technology
Good counseling stands or falls with good communication and interaction, no matter physical or online. People should feel heard and should give each other space to allow each other to express their opinions. At first it will not be easy to create such a dynamic in a mixed consultation, but technology can help us with that.
Microsoft recently made a number of tweaks that make presenting with PowerPoint through Teams easier. The goal is to maintain contact with colleagues. With this viewer mode, you are visible as a presenter as if you were presenting yourself in front of a screen. The advantage is that the presenter is in the center and the show supports the story rather than drawing attention to itself. In this context, it’s a good idea to point out the downside to screen sharing. Know that participants can’t see each other properly when sharing your screen. So don’t forget to stop sharing at the right time to prevent the interaction from disappearing.
Another example is an owl encounter. The name says it all: It’s a 360-degree camera that shows the entire conference room and focuses on the person speaking. It gives the feeling that everyone is already sitting at the same conference table. In short, be more creative with the digital facilities at your disposal that allow you to increase your interaction with each other.
virtual reality glasses
“It is not expected that the time when we are all sitting in the office will return”
The time we’re all sitting in the office isn’t expected to come back. Moreover, we need to embrace innovations like VR/AR (Virtual and Augmented Reality) in business, which helps us create a hybrid working environment. This technology enables you to collaborate interactively with colleagues and clients in the same virtual space of your living room or office. You can share files, comment, take notes, and view interactive presentations and 3D designs.
The Netherlands could become more digital. The traditional branches in particular are lagging behind. To be clear, the auto industry has maintained revenue during the lockdown by continuing its business through online conversations. Just imagine the amount of added value that can be created when adopting new business models focused on digital transformation. For example, a car manufacturer can partner with innovative start-ups that offer virtual test drives. By this I mean that there are still a lot of industries on the eve of their digital transformation.
For now, it is important that we redesign and discover a new way of working. When you actively involve everyone in new technological developments, acceptance will run smoother and you will be successful sooner.
(Author Mike Van Zandwijk is Winvision’s Director of Technology Development.)
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