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RECAP: Navigating the Hybrid Working Model - The New Standard of Work

Avatar of Autonomous Autonomous | Apr 29, 2021
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In our recent LIVE Webinar and Q&A session, Navigating the Hybrid Working Model - The New Standard of Work, guest speakers Prof. Robert C. Pozen from MIT Sloan and Duy Huynh CEO of Autonomous gave participants some essential insight and advice regarding the Hybrid Work Model and how to implement this new standard of work into any business. With their decades of combined expertise, knowledge, and personal experience, Robert and Duy guided guests on how to approach the Hybrid Work Model, the pros and cons, as well as how to deal with and manage the inevitable challenges that come with the territory.

The Speakers

DUY HUYNH: Founder, and CEO of Autonomous Inc. Duy developed Autonomous as one of the first vertically integrated smart office furniture companies. By owning every touchpoint along the supply chain, the company offers high-quality products directly to businesses and consumers at reasonable prices. Having exponentially grown the business through the pandemic, Duy now aims to provide complete solutions (hardware and software) to help workers the world over adapt to the new standard of Hybrid Work.

PROF. ROBERT C. POZEN: Robert’s 2012 tome, Extreme Productivity: Boost Your Results, Reduce Your Hours won huge critical acclaim and he was also recently featured on Bloomerg.com. This Spring, he’s set to release his next gamechanger, covering productivity when working remotely - Remote Inc.: How to Thrive at Work… Wherever You Are.
 

Moving Towards the Hybrid Work Model

Implementing the Hybrid Work Model without completely overwhelming your team with brand new work regulations and office schedules can most definitely prove difficult. Robert explains that there is no universal formula that can resolve every corporate issue as we move towards Hybrid Working. But there are still a few common factors to acknowledge, that should dictate our approach. These include…

  • The nature/type of work at hand. Every business is different, and there are a few categories that require their staff on-site every day of the week. 

  • The organizational culture and whether your company is teamwork oriented or not. For example - American companies usually support a very individualistic work method, whereas European organizations tend to encourage more social relations and group bonding. Fortunately, in this case, the Hybrid Work Model can be effectively applied to many existing American workplaces.

  • Balance is key, and finding that sweet spot between having people come into office vs. days allocated working remotely will depend on your individual business needs.

Duy continues to share his recent findings over the past year. Having reached out and listened to his customers there is a clear shift from the regular 9-5 over to remote work. The entire nation has chosen to go Hybrid or been forced to perform under this new standard of work. And the overall consensus is that “We don’t know how!”

If you’re looking to adopt the Hybrid Work Model into your business, there are 2 main factors that Managers and C-level leaders need to employ…

  • PEOPLE: Providing clear direction to support your team’s performance is crucial in implementing the Hybrid Work Model. Your employees need a dedicated space where they can communicate with one another face-to-face and access relevant materials. When working in the office, should employees be given a fixed space? Or should you allow them to search for an available desk to use at any given time? At Autonomous, we called this “Seat Assignment Optimization”, and admittedly the system needs some tweaking. There is a real need for a tool that helps manage and resolve problems that occur with seat assignment. To the best of your capabilities, make sure that when employees are working in-office that any other relevant departments & team members are also scheduled to be present on the same days. This will in turn promote workflow efficiency and business growth.

  • TOOLS: It’s so important to correctly fit out the workspace for your employees and ensure a seamless transition back to the office. Your company’s corporate needs will differ greatly from any other, so ensure you have the suitable tools (hardware and software) to build your personalized Hybrid Work Model.

The 4 Work Models

Continuing on from above, Duy outlines the 4 Work Models that exist within today’s landscape. They can be seen as building blocks and a natural progression towards what the future of work will look like.

  • In Office - The more traditional approach to “going to work”. What once was considered as “normal” is becoming less apparent and a rarity among organizations.

  • Work From Home - In the rising age of remote work from home, there has never been a more crucial time to have a home office that adequately supports your work performance and physical health. Thankfully, Autonomous continues to provide ergonomic Smart Office solutions to combat the fatigue of working from home.

  • Hybrid Work - Where a number of days are dedicated to working “in-office” while the rest of the week employees may choose to work remotely. To ensure a seamless transition between WFH and in-office for the entire team, business owners can look to Autonomous for their Hybrid Remote Work solutions and Bulk Order Business Deals. 

  • Work Anywhere - The inevitable future of work, where a growing population will work fulltime from wherever their location. Currently, Autonomous is working on their Zen Work Pod which will allow anyone to work effectively and comfortably from anywhere.

Key Tips On Organizing the Workspace

Robert closes things off by running through four essential steps in setting up the Hybrid Workspace when working remotely…

  • It’s best to designate a separate room, or at the very least a deskspace where you can focus on work and house your tools.

  • Stay organized! Have storage boxes or a dedicated cabinet so that your work materials aren’t lying around all over the place.

  • Companies should provide their employees with access to any necessary technology that will enhance their performance whilst working remotely. These may include: 4G, laptop, software, etc.

  • Having a clear structure/agenda not only for working hours but also for all work tasks is essential in maintaining workflow efficiency and business growth.

The Autonomous Way

So how does the team at Autonomous currently implement the Hybrid Work Model? And what measures are taken to ensure the business runs smoothly and KPIs are met? Duy explains…

  • To ensure peak performance from all members, staff are offered substantial subsidization to help build their own home office more affordably.

  • Managers are trained to manage their team virtually.

  • Autonomous implements an Objectives and Key Results (OKR) framework to prevent laggy performance, along with quarterly KPIs. Weekly performance reviews keeps team members in check, and regular team bonding activities keeps employees motivated and of positive mind.

What’s Next?

Is there something we missed? If you have any requests for our next webinar topic, we’d love to hear from you! Feel free to send your ideas over to marketing@autonomous.nyc

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