Transformation

16 August 2022

3 min.

Hybrid work: How to align individual and organizational needs?

The context of the pandemic has caused organizations to move forward with practices related to the individual wellbeing of staff members. There has been more concern than ever about individual wellbeing and safety. Individual preferences for return to work have been surveyed and it has become clear that…consensus will be difficult.

Yet research shows that there are benefits to working physically in the same location. But how can we get teams to want to come back to the office together if individual preferences don’t support this?

1. The benefits of working in the office

Improved cognitive functions and enhanced creativity

Researchers at the University of Michigan have shown that when we spend more time interacting with others (talking, socializing, connecting), our cognitive functions seem to improve. The researchers explain this through the mental processes of listening, empathizing, reflecting, and having conversations. This same research also shows that creativity would double when the team works in the same room (we gain a lot of energy by being with others).

Improved collaboration and projects

Other MIT researchers have also shown that when people are physically together, they are 3x more likely to collaborate and the quality of academic work and papers is increased. The same conclusion was reached by Harvard researchers who found that papers and publications produced in a (physical) collaborative setting were not only of higher quality but were also more often cited!

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Collaboration

2. Reconnecting in hybrid mode

Some organizations may feel quite lost with the changes brought about by the last few years and a new way of working to be created. And with good reason! Of course, individual wellbeing is a priority and inseparable from an organization’s performance, but so is the work culture and collective performance!

During the pandemic, in addition to changing collaboration patterns, some organizations have experienced dramatic economic (and workforce) growth. In order to compensate for the shortage of manpower, some organizations have not hesitated to recruit in more distant cities, or even in other regions or countries. This makes it all the more important to have a strong culture capable of attracting the candidates that other organizations are looking for.

Thus, in order for hybrid work to be a success for both the individual and the organization, work practices must be revisited in order to be in line with not only organizational values and objectives, but also individual needs and the new restrictions and opportunities that hybrid work brings. In other words, the success of an organization today depends on a strong and distinctive organizational culture in a hybrid work context.

So, has your organizational culture kept up with the hybrid movement? Do you still know what your organization’s DNA is? Is it still clear and strong?

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Take stock of your organizational culture

Approach - Work culture in hybrid mode