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May 3, 2022

Upskilling Remote and Hybrid Employees (Video & Podcast)

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Upskilling Remote and Hybrid Employees (Video & Podcast)

The future of work is now hybrid or even fully remote. Leaders who want to gain a competitive advantage in the future of work need to upskill employees in best practices for hybrid and remote collaboration and communication. That's the key take-away message of this episode of the Wise Decision Maker Show, which discusses upskilling remote and hybrid employees.

Video: “Upskilling Remote and Hybrid Employees”

Podcast: “Upskilling Remote and Hybrid Employees”

Links Mentioned in Videocast and Podcast



Hello everyone and welcome to another episode of the wise decision maker show where we help you make the wisest and most profitable decisions. Today, we'll talk about how you can make the wisest and most profitable decisions on upskilling remote and hybrid employees for the future of work. The future of work is hybrid and remote. That is the future of work that's very clear from a great deal of evidence from both employer desires and employee desires. So you want to be prepared for the future of work by upskilling. Your employees, your supervisors, your managers, your executives, everyone for the future of work, because hybrid work is really going to be different than in person work, or rim fully remote work. If you want to seize competitive advantage for the future of work. That's what you wanted to be thinking about. How do you adopt best practices for the future of work? We know that two thirds of US workers remotely worked remotely at least some time during the pandemic and about half of them can work fully remotely for all of their schedule. And employer survey results show company leaders that most employers will plan to maintain a hybrid schedule for those workers who worked remotely during the pandemic, and those who worked remotely some of their time during the pandemic. That means that most will spend one, two, maybe three days in the office, and some will be fully remote. So most one to three days in the office, some fully remote, that the decision making by leaders does match employee desires. Employee survey results show that of those who can work fully remotely. Most want to work on a hybrid schedule, maybe one or two days in the office, and 1/4. So a large number of wonderfully molded schedules only maybe about 10 to 15% want to work full time in the office. And in order to effectively have a hybrid schedule hybrid model, you want to understand and recognize that this hybrid work is going to be and is going to be continued to be different from either in office work or remote work. Employing hybrid first work move hybrid first model requires training your employees to collaborate effectively in a hybrid setting when they spend some of their time at home and some of their time in the office. And the same thing for innovation, you want to make sure they innovate effectively, again, when they spend some of their time in the office and some of their time at home. Collaboration innovation are the key critical components that will define success and competitive advantage in the future of work. And you want to make sure that your employees do so. To do so you want to train your employees to divide their work time effectively between home and office. We know from extensive research that people are overall quite a bit more productive at home than they are in the office, especially in their individual tasks. So in the office, you should say for collaborative tasks where there's kind of more of a divide, more of a wash between whether people are more productive in the office and more productive at home. And in the office. More intense collaborations are probably better for most people save the individual tasks at home, including preparing for collaborative tasks in the office, that should be done at home. Now, virtual communication is a key area of upskilling for people who will spend part of their time working remotely. Unfortunately, during the pandemic, companies failed to provide effective training overwhelmingly for virtual collaboration, virtual communication. And this was because while they were thinking, hey, we'll get back to the office, everything will be fine. Even though before the pandemic companies spent a great deal of money on teamwork, training and collaboration on communication training for lots of money. But they didn't spend it on much more complex and difficult and different collaboration, communication virtual environments. Now that company is realizing there's a permanent full time shift to hybrid schedule with some people even full time remote. That means you really need to invest quite a lot of resources into retraining and upskilling your employees for effective communication, collaboration and innovation in hybrid and remote settings. In communication, you want to realize what it means to lose those nonverbals even when zooming in and video conferencing don't get the full tone of voice. You don't get the full body expression body language and of course you get much less of that and text emojis don't place tone and body language. So those are really things you want to be thinking about Slack and Microsoft Teams. Trello Asana, Monday's, whatever you use those collaboration software and email of course, does not convey effectively the emotional nonverbals that are so important for communicating ideas. And that of course creates dangers for mutual understanding and connection emotionally between people which hinders collaboration and in Innovation. Now, in office face to face interaction, this is very important for effective collaboration innovation, you can detect problems early and intervene. So to facilitate good collaboration, and you can share your full ideas on innovation effectively and get excited talking to others, it's harder to do so in remote settings and hybrid settings if you don't train people effectively on collaboration, communication and innovation remotely. So that body language tone of voice is a big challenge leads to lots of miscommunications which impair collaboration and innovation. You want to provide training for your folks on emotional and social intelligence. Emotional Intelligence, refers to understanding and being able to manage your own emotions. Social Intelligence refers to understanding and being able to influence other people's emotions effectively. And you want to realize that these were things especially the social intelligence was much easier when we worked in the office, because body language, tone of voice and person are much easier to read, you're able, you're able to understand other people and convey your own emotions and thus influence other people much harder in remote and hybrid settings. So you want to help ensure that people are able to read hybrid remote meeting participants. So remote meeting participants when everyone's in a small corner, small square and zoom, especially when some people don't have better videos on, that's not great. And in hybrid meetings, when some people are on the small video conference screen, and others are on a small screen, they're all sitting in a room and you can barely see their faces. That's not great. neither. You want to train people to manage and influence others in those sorts of meetings and read them to understand what's going on in order to build strong connections, and address misunderstandings, improve collaboration and innovation. Besides that, So those are work collaboration, relevant things and innovation. You also want to be thinking about work life balance, because employees struggle with work life balance, in remote settings, hybrid settings, and of course, in person settings. But there are specific and particular struggles which are associated with hybrid remote settings, according to surveys, so employees feel burned out, unable to disconnect these settings. And they are obliged to respond to messages outside of work hours, partially because they don't have that division of oh, I'm home, I'm not working anymore. So you want to provide clear guidelines and training to balance work in life for hybrid and remote employees. Because otherwise, you're going to get employee burnout. And that's part of the great resignation that's going on. In these tight labor markets. You don't want your employees burning out and leaving your company for one that respects the employees work life balance more. So you want to send regular public reminders to employees to stick to preset hours for communication, don't go more than a couple of hours before or after hours before or after work unless there's a prearranged agreement to do so. And you want to communicate to your managers those mid level and lower managers to not burn out your employees zero tolerance for encouraging burnout to meet set goals. That means that your goals are problematic, or they're not managing very well if they're encouraging burnout. And managers really should discuss working hours with employees to address any challenges. But employees that might be facing where they see employees are overworking, because it's not great for employees to overwork B and then be burned out, that is not a good outcome that you want. So that is something you want to discourage. A good thing to think about is to establish a wellness team that addresses potential work life balance and burnout issues. So address, talk to employees who log on or send emails more than a couple of hours before the workday ends after the workday ends or before it begins. So you wanted to check them and discuss the situation with these employees. Exceptions would be something like an emergency happening, which shouldn't happen more than once a month or so. Now, that of course, couldn't be pre arranged to work agreements. So somebody can, for example, stop their work for free, and go pick up their kids and then put them to bed at eight and then work for a couple of hours between eight and 1011 or something like that, to make up for that time. That's totally cool. That's great. But you want to agree to that in advance and make sure that everything is okay with that employee. Now, an important thing to think about that I've seen go wrong in a number of clients is underperformance where employees are underperforming or pressure to work outside of work hours to work more, that is not a good idea because that'll cause burnout. And it's likely that there's something else going on that needs to be addressed as opposed to being employees not working enough in underperformance maybe due to the need for more professional development for that person, maybe they have an unmanageable workload, maybe something changed, their workload is different, because of supply chain disruptions or something like that. And you want to see, okay, maybe that's not a good thing for them. And for your company, or maybe the person is no longer a good fit for the job, maybe the job changed. And the role changed. Maybe the person's motivation skills shifted in some ways, and they're no longer a good fit for the job. And that's something to be thinking about. So this is what's involved in upskilling, remote and hybrid employees to make sure that you seize a competitive advantage for the future of work. All right, everyone, I hope you've enjoyed this episode of the wise decision maker show, please make sure to subscribe to the show on whatever channel you heard it. Whether it's a video in the form of a video cast on YouTube, or maybe a podcast on iTunes, or an Amazon podcast, make sure to subscribe to it and leave a review. That's the best compliment you can give a show. Please share it with your friends and family to make sure that they get the same benefit that you got from the show. And of course, send your thoughts to me about what you liked about the show and what can be improved at Gleb GL EB at disaster avoidance I look forward to seeing you and in the next episode of the wise decision maker show. And in the meantime, the wisest and most profitable decisions to you, my friends.

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Originally Published at Disaster Avoidance Experts on January 11, 2022.

Bio: Dr. Gleb Tsipursky is a world-renowned thought leader in future-proofing, decision making, and cognitive bias risk management in the future of work. He serves as the CEO of the boutique future-proofing consultancy Disaster Avoidance Experts, which specializes in helping forward-looking leaders avoid dangerous threats and missed opportunities. A best-selling author, he wrote Never Go With Your Gut: How Pioneering Leaders Make the Best Decisions and Avoid Business Disasters (Career Press, 2019), The Blindspots Between Us: How to Overcome Unconscious Cognitive Bias and Build Better Relationships (New Harbinger, 2020), and Returning to the Office and Leading Hybrid and Remote Teams: A Manual on Benchmarking to Best Practices for Competitive Advantage (Intentional Insights, 2021). His writing was translated into Chinese, Korean, German, Russian, Polish, French, and other languages. He was featured in over 550 articles and 450 interviews in prominent venues. These include Fortune, USA Today, Inc. Magazine, CBS News, Business Insider, Government Executive, The Chronicle of Philanthropy, Time, Fast Company, and elsewhere. His expertise comes from over 20 years of consulting, coaching, and speaking and training for mid-size and large organizations ranging from Aflac to Xerox. It also comes from over 15 years in academia as a behavioral scientist, including 7 as a professor at Ohio State University. You can contact him at Gleb[at]DisasterAvoidanceExperts[dot]com, LinkedIn, Twitter @gleb_tsipursky, Instagram @dr_gleb_tsipursky, Medium @dr_gleb_tsipursky, and gain free access to his “Assessment on Dangerous Judgment Errors in the Workplace'' and his “Wise Decision Maker Course” with 8 video-based modules at

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