Learning & Development

5 Best Practices for Building Resilient Hybrid Teams in 2022

As we head into year 3 of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Omicron wave pushes return-to-office dates back even further, it’s more clear than ever that work has fundamentally changed for good. While hybrid work may have seemed like a novelty at the onset of the pandemic in 2020, it’s here to stay, and to be successful, employers must confront complex challenges around communication, collaboration, and belonging. 

As an HR leader, it is extremely challenging to keep up with the pace of change—and the emotional stakes have never been higher. Collective burnout has worn down employees and pushed them toward the brink of The Great Resignation. 

While this period of time is undoubtedly stressful, it’s important to remember that it’s an opportunity to completely reset and create hybrid teams from the ground up that are more resilient; productive; and, ultimately, happier. 

No matter what the future may hold, here are five best practices to remember when building hybrid teams:

  1. Inclusivity is the North Star: People should feel included wherever they are. With teams spread across home and office environments, employees working in a different space can easily feel left out. Now more than ever, inclusivity work norms have taken on a new importance. For example, if team members are working together from different locations, even if most of the team is in the office, the expectation is that all team members still join meetings virtually from their personal computers so that those who are working remotely feel 100% included. 
  2. Foster connection in new ways: Personal relationships are the bedrock of a successful team. Those connections foster the collaboration, creativity, community, and overall harmony that a team needs to work effectively and maintain happiness in the workplace. Before the pandemic, it was easy to maintain these relationships through the office and after-work activities, but it won’t happen as organically in a hybrid world—you must be intentional. Teams today need to embrace new routines and ceremonies that keep them connected while allowing them to meet in person every once in a while. Special team off-sites, dedicated office days, mutual work-from-home days, and other tactics can help teams celebrate successes in unique ways, give space and time to engage in teambuilding activities, and stay better connected and maintain social interactions.
  3. When you return to offices, rethink the setup: Our work habits have changed, and our offices should reflect that change for hybrid work. For us at monday.com, that meant designing our offices for the post-pandemic era, including workstations set up in a living room setting, brainstorming areas by the coffee station, standing desks, collaborative meeting rooms, and so much more. We kept in mind that people have become accustomed to working in different types of environments, and we wanted to create a space that adapts to familiar workflows. 
  4. Managers must be active: Leaders today need to actively reach out to their team. This means investing in understanding what employees are going through and an extra level of intuition to address the unspoken, both professionally and personally. This new skill set is integral to a manager’s “toolbox” and helps make up for the lack of daily in-person interactions. 
  5. People should come first: The pandemic made people question and rethink so many things in their lives, especially around their values and professions. This has, therefore, established the importance of mental and physical well-being in the workplace. Employers need to be mindful of their employees by creating environments of open communication where everyone feels heard and empowered to take care of themselves and their families. 

With the world changing so quickly, there’s no way to know what the teams of tomorrow will need. However, by remembering to put universal necessities like communication and emotional well-being at the heart of everything, organizations can create teams that are better positioned to weather uncertainty and come out ahead.

Oshrat Binyamin is the Vice President of Human Resources at monday.com.