The six pillars for creating a culture of engagement in the hybrid workplace.
By Lidia Llera, Sales Executive of Actua Solutions
Are you fully back in the office? Is your team totally remote? Or are you offering flexible work options to develop where they want, creating a hybrid workplace? You will have read hundreds of articles about hybrid work, but we will give you some very practical recommendations to create a culture of engagement in your organization.
In the last two years, a large portion of organizations have moved most of their operations, including training, collaboration and communication, to the online ecosystem. Others are readapting based on their culture and a number of factors unique to each industry and company: their strategy and their people.
Simplifies access to knowledge to drive engagement
Whichever model is chosen, the priority is to have a simple, flexible and secure collaborative work environment that keeps projects moving from any device and any location, without having to constantly switch between applications and navigating unsuccessfully from one resource to another with the frustration that comes with not finding exactly the information we need to solve in the here and now. This is the first of the six pillars of engagement: discovery. The other five are: selection, collaboration, recognition, integration and analysis.
The six pillars for a corporate culture of engagement
Take advantage of the commute to read an ebook or watch a video on a topic we have started working on(discovery). Share it on the spot with our team just by clicking on the internal communication channel(select). Arrive at the office and, with a single gesture, initiate a quick call to discuss it. Collect team ideas and suggestions on a collaborative whiteboard(collaborate). Create a playlist with all the resources, including Blackboard, in our learning community(integration). Draw on the experience of another department’s team to shape our project through their comments and suggestions(acknowledgement). To be able to return to it from any device and anywhere(analysis).
Each of these pillars represents a different way to uncover your company’s hidden experts, facilitate informal learning, teamwork and ultimately improve employee engagement by fostering a culture of commitment. When employees feel that they belong to a team or organization, in the sense that it aligns with their values and allows them to express important aspects of their identity: not only will they tend to perform better, but they will also experience higher levels of engagement and well-being.
Katarina Bergh CHRO & Global head of Strategy Operations at Spotify since 2013 defines diversity as being invited to the party; inclusion as when they ask you to dance, and belonging as when they play your song.
The challenge lies in defining the common thread. Work is not only a vehicle for productivity, but an opportunity to have meaningful connections with others, which can improve our overall well-being. Sharing knowledge, positioning ourselves as experts, learning from our environment, having at our fingertips the necessary resources to solve day-to-day problems and improve our performance provides us not only with a sense of belonging, but also with the feeling of recognition of our achievements. If we feel that our achievements are recognized and we are able to perform and grow on a daily basis, we will have the certainty of being in a safe place. Those employees who have the opportunity to share their knowledge or apply their newly acquired knowledge are aware of its impact and will be more engaged. Reason enough to think of simple, secure and flexible digital communication environments that accommodate this process, such as Totara Learn, Totara Engage and Zoom One.
Go one step further: Create a learning community
Now, once you have established a collaborative, flexible and effective workflow, it may be time to consider an online learning community. In short, a unified place where all your workers train, collaborate, communicate and perform. It can take place in all kinds of places: in forums, on social networks or in a specially designed system, such as a learning experience platform (LXP) like Totara Engage together with Totara Learn (LMS).
A learning community helps bridge formal and informal learning by allowing people to contribute ideas, solve problems and share useful resources with their peers. It brings together people with something in common to integrate training into the workflow and facilitate a transfer of knowledge and a sense of belonging.
Individuals can achieve more when others with more knowledge are available to support them. Having specialized teams that help others achieve their objectives is key to increasing the sense of belonging and, consequently, performance.
A good learning community supports multiple approaches to training. This could include spaces to collaborate on projects and ideas, ways to monitor resources, and places to discover new, relevant, high-quality content. In short, the strategic solution to leverage internal knowledge to achieve overall objectives. Let’s look at some practical applications:
- Initiation and onboarding: onboarding training playlists with useful resources for new recruits. Create a collaborative workspace where they can ask questions and get to know people in the organization.
- Support performance: users and subject matter experts can upload “how-to” resources to help solve problems when needed. These resources can be either internal, found on the Internet or generated expressly.
- Coordinating projects: using workspaces to discuss, share updates and collaborate on projects
- Recognize and reward employees: users can comment on and rate resources shared by their peers to show their appreciation of the content.
A commitment to clarity: in the message and in the technology
Since the future of work is hybrid, so too must be the future of learning communities. Any strategy should aim to ensure that all participants have the same experience regardless of whether they are participating in person or online.
The first step is that all environments and applications are intuitive and unified. We will not achieve our goal if employees have to navigate countless resource repositories or constantly switch from one application to another.
The good news is that technology allows the same experience for everyone and great flexibility to communicate well Some key applications to consider:
A virtual classroom tool connected to the training platform that allows access from any device for users and simplifies session scheduling for trainers. For example: create collaborative whiteboards and/or presentations that can be shared simultaneously in chats and workspaces once the session is over and continue learning after the session. If it also allows the creation of smaller groups within a classroom to discuss in parallel different aspects of the project or to develop differentiated activities among the attendees, the experience is elevated to another level. That’s why Zoom Webinars connected with Totara Learn is perfect.
Offering employees a space where they can participate by emulating a face-to-face session with a whiteboard is a great advantage. Sometimes it is interesting that all participants have the same weight and sometimes a Zoom Webinar session will be more valuable. If you also add collaboration you will create a much richer experience. You can record the session and integrate it into a playlist that also includes collaborative and/or interactive documents (presentations, spreadsheets, etc.).
Surveys, Polls, Voting and instant Q&A will help us to evaluate the workflow and development of a project; as well as to track the level of learning achieved in a synchronous session.
Have the opportunity to show how it is done. Recording ourselves showing the screen and sharing the link in a chat or workspace is a common practice in our daily lives. But did you know that you can also remotely access a caller’s equipment during a Zoom call? This takes collaboration and support to another level.
Want to learn more? At Actua Solutions we help you define the features and functionality your team needs to stay secure, connected and productive. Create learning communities with Totara and optimize collaborative work thanks to Zoom One.