Business leaders are still trying to figure out what hybrid work approach is best to foster a positive employee experience that also boosts productivity. In fact, in the past four years, 74% of companies have changed their hybrid work policy more than once. 

While there is no universal solution for successful hybrid work, my team at Lucid Software conducted a survey to understand knowledge workers’ perspectives on hybrid work, which revealed that interesting statistic, and many more. Surprisingly, almost three-quarters (71%) of employees want to go into the office at some point during the week, and 67% are satisfied with their company’s hybrid work approach. However, the survey revealed that the greatest challenge companies and teams face is maintaining productivity amid evolving policies.

Where is the disconnect?

In our survey, 75% of knowledge workers said ineffective communication or collaboration hinders innovation within their organization. Many knowledge workers struggle to collaborate effectively in hybrid settings because they’ve never received proper training for it. While it’s easy to just “work,” there are strategies and tools that can significantly enhance productivity in hybrid environments.

So, what can executives do to support effective teamwork, productivity, and collaboration, which, in turn, supports greater company innovation?

Set your hybrid organization up for success

To optimize hybrid work policies, executives must create both working environments and tech stacks that enable more efficient and effective collaboration and productivity. Here are a few ways leaders can better support hybrid teams:

  • Simplify your tech stack. Nearly half of the global workforce reports being dissatisfied with their company’s tech stack and currently uses more than five applications to get their work done. By thoughtfully selecting tools that address multiple needs, and ensuring they integrate well, companies can solve various pain points, streamline information, and align teams. Additionally, despite 73% of knowledge workers stating that visuals are very or extremely important for collaboration, only 22% report using a visual collaboration tool. Investing in the right technologies for your team’s needs can create a more cohesive and productive hybrid work environment, enabling seamless collaboration regardless of location.
  • Be intentional about enablement. Only 29% of entry-level roles, individual contributors, and managers have whiteboarding tools in their tech stack, and just 19% use them, indicating a lack of understanding of the value they can provide and a need for training to maximize these tools. Additionally, only around a quarter of entry-level and manager-level employees feel adequately trained in hybrid collaboration. Close these gaps by providing thorough training on tools in your tech stack to help teams work more efficiently together. Regular training sessions on the latest features and best practices can ensure employees maximize the solutions available.
  • Establish clear processes for hybrid teamwork. Our survey reveals that organizations have made surprisingly few efforts to enable hybrid work. Only 39% have equipped meeting rooms with technology for both remote and in-office team members, and a mere 34% have created hybrid meeting guidelines. To create a more effective hybrid work environment, companies must establish comprehensive processes and provide clear guidelines and resources for team collaboration both in the office and virtually.
  • Use AI to kickstart ideation. AI can significantly enhance idea generation and project automation, giving teams valuable time back. 75% of knowledge workers use AI at work, reporting that it saves time, boosts creativity, and allows them to focus on critical tasks. When evaluating your tech stack, be intentional about integrating AI to help teams leverage this asset in their day-to-day activities and ongoing workflows.
  • Establish a centralized space to align with your team. A shared space allows teams to streamline important information while ideating, planning, prioritizing, and working together continuously. At Lucid, we use team hubs to ensure alignment at the outset of every project. These hubs centralize documentation, making it easier for everyone to access the context they need and providing a common space for real-time or asynchronous collaboration.

Leaders, if you’re feeling a disconnect between your employees and your hybrid work policy, the good news is that the fix is rooted less in when or how often your teams go into an office and more in how you empower and support their collaboration. 

Dave Grow is CEO of Lucid Software.

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