If you’re like most law offices, you’ve probably been forced to make some changes in the way you operate over the two years. Many firms are stuck in – or have willingly chosen – a hybrid working environment, with some employees working from home and others coming into the office.
While this can be challenging, there are ways to make the most of it and ensure that your team is still thriving. Here are a few tips:
Make Communication a Priority
This is probably the most important thing you can do in a hybrid work environment. Make sure that everyone knows what their roles and responsibilities are, and that there is a clear channel of communication between the office and those working remotely.
There are several things you can do to help improve communication in a hybrid work setting.
- Schedule regular check-ins: Whether it’s a weekly meeting or a quick daily stand-up, regular check-ins can help ensure everyone is on the same page and knows what’s going on. Keep in mind, some people will want fewer check-ins than others. Some people find it distracting and would rather focus on work goals. Try to strike a balance between checking in and focusing on essential tasks.
- Keep communication channels open: Make sure you have a method of communication that everyone is comfortable with and that you’re using (email, Slack, etc.). This will help ensure that people feel comfortable communicating and that there aren’t any communication barriers.
- Encourage open communication: Let your team know that you’re open to hearing their ideas and concerns and that you value their input. This will help create an environment where people feel comfortable communicating openly.
- Be responsive: When people do reach out to you, make sure you respond quickly. This will show that you value their communication and that you’re committed to keeping the lines of communication open.
There are many great tools to help you stay connected and productive. They work even when you’re not in the same physical space. Utilize video conferencing, instant messaging, and project management software to keep everyone on the same page.
There are also plenty of tools that make project management easier. Tools like Asana or Trello can be a great way to keep track of tasks and deadlines and can help ensure that everyone is on the same page.
Working in a hybrid environment can sometimes feel isolating, so it’s important to encourage collaboration whenever possible. Hold team meetings (virtually or in person), assign group projects, and create opportunities for employees to interact with each other.
With some employees in the office and others working from home, it’s important to be flexible in your approach. Not everyone will have the same needs or preferences, so try to accommodate them as best you can.
Take Care of Yourself (and Your Team)
This is a stressful time for everyone, so make sure you’re taking care of yourself both physically and mentally. Encourage your team to do the same, and create a supportive environment where people feel comfortable talking about their challenges.