7 Essential Tips to Lead Your Team Back Into the Office
Back in March 2020, nobody expected to be away from their offices for what would turn out to be a long two years of remote working. While we adapted to being away from our offices there’s a renewed drive to bring people back into the office, something that we at Glandore are happy to see.
With things finally getting back to normal and employees being expected to return to offices across all of Ireland, it is important to provide them with an environment where they feel safe and assured that their well-being will be respected and prioritized. While we look after those things in the buildings our members are working from, we thought it might be useful to share some tips that employers can adopt to provide their employees with a smooth transition back too.
The first and most important tip is to be absolutely transparent with your employees about the safety arrangements and what they should expect once they come back to the office. The transition of returning back to offices will be a huge shift for most employees and in order to ease that process, you need to prepare them to feel comfortable and at ease upon their return.
Give time to adjust
Returning back to the usual office environment after almost two years of working from home will not be easy for a number of employees. Understand that there may be struggles of transitioning back for some people and provide them with the time and flexibility to adjust themselves to this new environment.
Ask them for suggestions
It is best to ask for suggestions when you’re not quite sure about your employees’ circumstances and mindset after living through a pandemic. We have all been in the same storm but in very different boats so it’s worthwhile to check in with employees on an individual basis. Be open with your employees and ask for their suggestions on the ways in which you can improve the process of transition to make them feel welcome and comfortable.
Upgrade your communication
Discover new ways to establish effective communication with employees to understand their concerns regarding the process. Listening to their needs and wants will help you to provide them with the best possible experience upon their return. Office culture is an important aspect of your business to get right, more now than ever, so you might also find some wisdom in a recent post we wrote here.
Flexible transition plan
Every organization is unique and has a unique set of requirements. Carefully consider the requirements of your organization, employees, and clients, and then curate a transition plan. Make sure that your plan provides enough flexibility to overcome any unforeseen circumstances that may arise with your team getting back.
Consider a hybrid model
If it works for your business, adopting a hybrid model where you can balance your company’s needs with that of your employees could be the best way to approach the return to the office process. Due to the pandemic, employees were suddenly obliged to switch to online mode and it took some people a while to get used to it. After two years they are now expected to adapt again and return back to the offices. Give your employees the option to choose between the office and remote work and the flexibility to completely accept this change. As mentioned above be sure to communicate with your employees, tell them that you are considering a hybrid model and work together to make this as effective as possible for all parties.
Safety protocols in place
Having faced many adverse circumstances due to the pandemic, it is only natural for employees to be concerned about safety measures once they return to the office. Provide your employees with clear and accessible safety protocols with real-time data so that they can always feel reassured that their safety is still a priority. This will help when integrating people back into the office as some offices will continue to maintain social distance and deal with high-traffic office spaces.
From clear communication and transparency to managing safety protocols and employee expectations there are lots of things to consider as we ease back to the office. We know that this will be a tricky time for some people, so we hope that our suggestions have helped to guide the way.
If you are a part of the Glandore Network and making the move back to the office our ops and community teams are always here to help. If you have any questions ahead of your transition back to the office, be sure to get in touch with us and we’ll be here with a helping (sanitised) hand.