How to Build Company Culture When Hybrid Working

As businesses embrace hybrid working models, the challenge of nurturing a strong company culture becomes increasingly pertinent.
February 28, 2024
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As businesses embrace hybrid working models, the challenge of nurturing a strong company culture becomes increasingly pertinent. With teams dispersed across various locations, maintaining cohesion, and fostering a sense of belonging can seem daunting. However, with the right tools, strategies, and mindset, building a vibrant company culture in a hybrid work setting is not only achievable but essential for long-term success.

As per Steelcase research, individuals seek a return to the office for the sense of connection to the company’s mission, fostering community, and enhancing productivity support. However, the study reveals that 87% of business leaders anticipate providing increased flexibility. Moreover, while 23% envision the office remaining the primary work location, 72% anticipate adopting a hybrid work model. Employees also express a desire to maintain some level of remote work, with 54% expecting to work from home one day a week or less, and 26% expecting to work from home two to three days per week. A recent study conducted by the University of Chicago indicates that as people return to the workplace, as much as 22% of workdays could be conducted from home.

This means businesses will need to learn to create, foster and nurture culture when employees are working in multiple locations. So, let’s explore actionable steps and best practices to cultivate a thriving company culture amidst the evolving landscape of hybrid working and why your organisation needs to foster.

Define Core Values and Purpose:

Start by clearly defining your company’s core values and purpose. These serve as the foundation of your culture, guiding decision-making and shaping behaviours across the organisation. Ensure that these values are communicated effectively to all employees, regardless of their location, and integrated into daily operations.

Foster Communication and Transparency:

Effective communication is key to building trust and fostering a sense of connection among remote and in-office employees alike. Leverage digital tools and platforms, such as efficient HR software like Activ People HR, to facilitate seamless communication, encourage open dialogue, and ensure transparency across teams. Regular updates and informal check-ins can help bridge the gap and strengthen relationships within the organisation.

Encourage Collaboration and Team Building:

Despite physical distance, prioritise opportunities for collaboration and team building. Schedule virtual meetings, brainstorming sessions, and collaborative projects to encourage cross-functional teamwork and foster a sense of camaraderie among employees. Consider organising virtual social events, team-building activities, and networking opportunities to promote bonding and strengthen relationships outside of work tasks.

Promote Flexibility and Work-Life Balance:

Embrace the flexibility inherent in hybrid working arrangements and prioritise work-life balance. Empower employees to set their own schedules, accommodate personal commitments, and create a supportive environment where well-being is prioritised. Encourage managers to lead by example and promote a culture of flexibility, trust, and respect for individual needs.

Recognise and Reward Achievements:

Acknowledging and celebrating the contributions of employees is essential for morale and motivation, especially in a hybrid work environment. Implement a system for recognising achievements, milestones, and exceptional performance, whether through virtual shout-outs, employee spotlights, or rewards programs. Cultivate a culture of appreciation and recognition to foster a sense of pride and engagement among employees.

Provide Your Team with Branded Merch:

Believe it or not, branded merch can go a long way for company culture. Office travel bags or mugs and laptop carriers can prove beneficial for transporting laptops to and from the office, while eco-friendly coffee cups and water bottles are likely to be appreciated additions to home offices.

Consider assembling new starter packs that include essential items for your new employees, and don’t hesitate to inject some fun into the process. Who wouldn’t appreciate a branded mini desk vacuum to keep their workspace free of crumbs? Such gestures not only demonstrate the human side of your business but also reinforce the importance of workplace culture.

Lead by Example:

Lastly, leadership plays a crucial role in shaping company culture. Lead by example, embodying the values and behaviours you wish to instil within the organisation. Demonstrate empathy, resilience, and adaptability in navigating challenges and uncertainties, and prioritise employee well-being and inclusivity in decision-making processes. By fostering a culture of trust, collaboration, and continuous learning, leaders can inspire and empower employees to thrive in a hybrid work environment.

To conclude, navigating the complexities of hybrid working while cultivating a thriving company culture requires intentional effort and the right tools. With the rise of flexible work arrangements, organisations must prioritize strategies that foster connection, collaboration, and inclusivity across distributed teams. By leveraging innovative HR software solutions like Activ People HR, businesses can streamline processes, enhance communication, and reinforce cultural values in a hybrid work environment. Embracing the opportunities presented by hybrid working, while leveraging technology to support employee engagement and well-being, paves the way for a resilient and thriving organisational culture in the digital age.

Together, let’s build a workplace where every individual feels valued, connected, and empowered to succeed, regardless of their location.

Original Article: HRnews

Unable to create a vibrant company culture in a hybrid work setting? Build a strategic approach that addresses the unique needs and challenges of both onsite and remote employees. For all your recruitment challenges – contact our HR & digital recruitment specialist Gareth Allison on 02920 620702

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