Going hybrid #6 - Corporate culture and remote work

Future of work
August 25, 2021
Published by

The advent of hybrid work in companies requires them to preserve or redesign their culture. Indeed, the separation of employees between the office and the remote worker can crack the bonds between employees. But it is also a fantastic opportunity to rethink the way people behave and communicate.

Asymmetrical power relations

Environmental inequalities

The location of employees has a direct influence on their position in the power relations within the company. Those who work remotely naturally have less visibility of their work and efforts vis-à-vis managers. On the contrary, those who are present in the office can more easily highlight what they do and how they do it. Through informal exchanges with colleagues, they can also promote their actions to managers in an indirect way. 

On the other hand, remote collaborators have more limited access to resources that can help them in their work, whether because of material conditions (internet connection, personal PC), technical conditions (access to the server, authorizations) or human conditions (solitude, etc.). As a result, they may find it difficult to do their work properly and therefore to show their competence.

Inequalities in skills

Not all employees are equally comfortable operating in a hybrid environment, whether they are remote work or not. Some have the ability to adapt to a changing organisation. These are usually those who are good at building relationships. They will be able to ask for and find the information they need, especially by crossing the boundary between face-to-face and remote. In doing so, they will demonstrate their commitment to the company. This capacity is therefore a source of power. The important thing is to recognise these inequalities to create a fair and equitable working environment.

Towards a culture of trust and results

remote work necessarily implies a shift to a culture based on two axes. Firstly, employees must be trusted. It would be unhealthy and even impossible to monitor employees when they work from home or a third location. Employees must be given autonomy, with clear objectives to be achieved, taking into account the working conditions and the above-mentioned power relationship when setting the KPIs. However, employees should be able to contact their manager easily for feedback points. Taking account of imbalances will create psychological security that will promote performance and communication. It will be essential for managers to use emotional intelligence, especially to detect isolation and disengagement. With Deskare, as a manager, you can see who hardly ever comes to the office in your team and take action accordingly.

Then, the second axis linked to the first is to insist on the result and not the means. It is perfectly ridiculous to be a presentee when remote work! At the same time, a culture of writing should be established, especially if you used to share information with each other as you passed each other on the premises.  

Cohesion at all costs

hybrid work, if poorly implemented, can undermine the cohesion of your teams. Studies conducted during the pandemic showed that information sharing within teams increased, while the opposite occurred for the links between different teams. We can also see the emergence of two different cultures in the company: an office culture and a remote work culture. To combat these phenomena, it is recommended to equip yourself with collaborative tools to continue the remote exchanges that would normally have taken place while walking around the company's offices. Moreover, you need to have a good idea of who is where and when, in order to be able to manage in an efficient and adapted way. With Deskare, this is exactly what you can do by filtering at team and office level. Organising yourself to work together will then be easy. Managers also have the possibility to send messages to the teams to inform them of an event in the office in order to strengthen cohesion.

We hope you enjoyed this article :) We look forward to seeing you in the coming days for more content inspired by your experience of hybrid work. Until then, we wish you a great week in hybrid mode!

At Deskare, we specialize in supporting companies in their transition to hybrid work: both through our platform, deskare.io, and through our experience of hundreds of HRDs andOffice Managers we have met over the past months. So don't hesitate to contact us to discuss, or if you have any questions about flex office and hybrid work! We'd love to talk about it ➡ vianney@deskare.io