Posted on: 16th June 2022
Reading time: 5 mins
Working entirely from home will never be a sustainable solution for most, any more than returning to the office full time could be. We look at where the best balance lies, and how it can help you hold on to your best people.
You and your colleagues have just taken part in a two-year programme that experts are calling the ‘biggest experiment in the history of work’.
That experiment taught bosses and workers alike some very important lessons.
The first of these is that it was possible for organisations to carry on being productive while the vast majority of workers were permanently working from home during the pandemic. This was true for businesses ranging from the very largest global enterprises with hundreds of thousands of employees to the smallest businesses with only two or three.
The second lesson employees drew from the great lockdown experiment is that working on your own, with only video calls and emails to keep in touch with your team causes high levels of fatigue.
This means that working entirely from home in a ‘virtual office’ will never be a sustainable solution for most of your team, any more than returning to the office full time could be. (Almost half of workers say they’d rather look for another job than go back to the old way of working in the office five days a week.)
In fact, the experiment’s most powerful conclusion is that the vast majority of employees – 87% – now say they want to work the hybrid way.
It’s easy to understand why, because the benefits for workers are clear. Hybrid working cuts their commuting time. It gives them the flexibility and control they want over their work-life balance. And it gives them the ability to work together with colleagues in flexible workspaces whenever they need to.
But hybrid working is increasingly the choice of employers too. And the benefits to businesses big and small are just as clear as they are to employees.
Working the hybrid way can help your organisation to:
1. Retain the best talent (the number one challenge facing SMEs today).
2. Help keep those employees happy and healthy (hybrid working has clear benefits for workers’ wellbeing).
3. Empower that talent to deliver the improved productivity every business needs to thrive (it’s proven that the number of high performers within an organisation increases when they are given radical flexibility like that offered by hybrid working).
4. Meet your environmental targets by reducing carbon emissions from unnecessary offices and commuting.
5. Boost your bottom line by cutting down on permanent space that you don’t need any more.
This combination of financial, cultural and environmental benefits helps explain why leaders and HR experts in so many businesses are investigating how they can harness the power of hybrid working. They’re finding that it’s all about empowerment and not about micromanagement.
In fact, many business owners and leaders who implement the hybrid way of work are much more likely to adopt an empathetic management style. One that measures the quality of their team’s work by its outcomes, rather than by monitoring and measuring their activity levels.
This in turn will make your firm an enjoyable and rewarding place to work, helping you to keep hold of the people you want. Because replacing valued and experienced team members is time-consuming and expensive.
Given that staff retention is currently one of the biggest challenges faced by businesses around the world, anything that can help make it easier to keep your team together is going to be a welcome addition to your armoury.
With its combination of a more productive, happier and healthier team, less need to replace valued members of that team, lower fixed overheads, lower carbon emissions, and even a better bottom line, it’s easy to see why hybrid working is such a growing trend.
Find out more about how Regus can help you harness the power of hybrid working for your business.
Want to know more about how we can help with hybrid working? Give us a call.
We’ll get you set up straight away.