Virtual Teams

Hybrid Teams – Deciding what work to do where?

In hybrid teams, people work in a range of locations, usually including working in the office, working from home and often from a “third space” such as a coworking space, coffee shop or a branch office of their company

We need to think about how this will change the way we work and if we are working in different locations, which work is best performed in which location.

Three of the key factors to take into account are

  • individual and collective work – how do we perform our tasks. Experience and research is generally showing that people are even more productive in performing individual tasks when they are working from home but that collaborative tasks are more challenging to do remotely
  • asynchronous and synchronous working – when and how do we need to coordinate with others. Synchronous working requires us to be available at the same time, if not the same place as our colleagues. This puts constraints on the times we need to work and requires either a virtual or face-to-face meeting.
  • star group and spaghetti team working – how do we organize collectively for coordination or collaboration. In a hub and spoke “star group” way of working individuals are coordinated by a common boss and a lot of this can be done through one to one conversations or calls. In a more interconnected “spaghetti team” people collaborate deeply around a shared objective and this requires more collective and synchronous working . Your job will probably incorporate elements of both.

What is the best hybrid pattern for you and your team?

Determining the right pattern of work for you and for your specific team depends on two key factors

  • the nature of the work you are performing, and particularly the collaborative aspects of that work
  • individual preferences on working location and times and how much your corporate culture is willing and able to accommodate these

It is going to take a while for us to get our heads around the opportunities this flexibility brings. We are already running workshops with clients to help teams work through this and to look at how they can combine the needs of the work and their personal preferences into a hybrid working pattern and schedule that works for both the organisation and the individual?

In our new book Leading remote and virtual teamsManaging yourself and others in remote and hybrid teams or when working from home we will give you lots more ideas about how to set up, work within and run a hybrid team.

We also have a whole range of hybrid team training modules that cover key content in this area and help teams facilitate the right solutions for their reality


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