Hire hybrid champions or risk workplace wellbeing

Helen Attia discusses the importance of hiring for hybrid.

Employee having a virtual meeting at the office.

Like many companies around the world, many of us now work hybrid. We split our time between home and the office (and anywhere else it makes sense to work).

That means if you’re a team manager, you’ll face challenges around growing a happy, healthy, and productive team.

It may seem impossible to balance your employees’ expectations for where and how they like to get work done, and your own specific business needs.

With so many different approaches to hybrid work — I’ve found there is never a “one-size-fits-all”. How your employees’ time and work schedules are managed could look completely different to the company next door.

So what’s the right way forward? How can you develop a system that feels just as flexible as the people themselves?

Hybrid work is about people

Employees meeting at Kadence.

This may not come as a surprise: work is still 99% about the people. I firmly believe keeping individuals happy and fulfilled in their jobs is the single most important contributor to business success.

I work at Kadence, where we build technology to help organise and coordinate a company’s teams and spaces. The bottom line of everything we do comes down to how that impacts employees on an individual level.

“You need a hybrid champion. Someone who can continuously nurture and cultivate a company that ensures its hybrid model is working for its people.”

To make hybrid work, companies need to balance the virtual and the in-person. Face-to-face interaction is important for healthy communication with team members. Remote work is equally essential to give employees the flexibility they need and the agency to decide how and when they work.

If you get the balance right – your people will thank you and you’ll find your team fulfilling their potential.

Unfortunately, there is never a “set and forget” system to getting the balance right.

Championing hybrid

Kadence hybrid working.

The thing is: people change. Their habits, expectations, needs, and movements are all still subject to the flux of life — and so what good is a strategy that doesn’t do the same?

At Kadence, my role is to ensure we are continuously reviewing, iterating, optimising our hybrid setup, and working with customers to do the same with our tools.

Whether that means addressing employee needs on a personal level and empowering them to do their best work from wherever makes the most sense or supporting teams to make their own decisions — I am committed to ensuring the fabric of our company molds around its people.

The reality then, is you need a hybrid champion – someone who can continuously nurture and cultivate a company that ensures its hybrid model is working for its people.

Owning change: hiring for hybrid

Kadence employees at trade show.

And what if you have more than just one hybrid champion?

Recently at Kadence, we’ve taken another big step towards treating hybrid work as a living thing that requires active thought and attention.

We’ve welcomed a new team member on board — Dave Cairns — to act as Kadence’s Future of Work strategist.

Dave’s work will be focused on helping us become even more savvy to the evolving needs of our team and the industry as a whole.

It seems every day there’s a new development in the way we work (are you even on LinkedIn?!) — a piece of research or a new tool that offers us a whole new perspective on how we go about our jobs.

Onboarding Dave, who is at the cutting edge of “future of work” thought leadership, is a key piece in our hybrid work puzzle.

So then the solution becomes easier if we work together. If we all have insight and care into how well the company can perform, hybrid work will continue to thrive and bring you the expected results.

Hybrid = success

MOOsters having a meeting at the office.

At the end of the day, running a successful business is a collective experience.

While having a few key hybrid work champions is a necessary part of implementing your strategy on a management level, it’s crucial that this championing extends to employees on an individual level too.

What we call “Kadence” is a constantly evolving, living entity — shifting with the unpredictable changes in people and processes.

The more we understand that how we work should be evolving alongside it — and be led by individuals — the healthier our companies will become.

And healthy companies make successful businesses!

Helen Attia is Head of People and Partnerships at Kadence, a software platform that helps companies get smarter about the where and when of work.

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