The quest for the best talent continues in most workplaces, and it’s even more important when you have an Out of Office team. Many workers see flexible work – including working from home – as a benefit, but don’t assume that’s all you have to offer in order to get the best people. The article How to Attract Top Talent for Your Virtual Team shares some of the pitfalls and lessons of a company that gradually shifted from in-office to Out of Office.
It looks at things like the company culture, the personality of the remote workers, and setting the right recruitment criteria.
Working Out of Office is growing in popularity but it still has some way to go before it becomes a mainstream way of working. One of the obstacles on the path to mainstream acceptance is employers regarding flexible work arrangements such as telework to be a benefit or perk, rather than as a deliberate strategy for recruiting, retaining and engaging staff. Speakers at a recent conference on flexible work listed several key aspects of successful Out of Office work programmes:
- Senior managers embrace telework as a strategy and an essential element of organizational success.
- The program is informal, meaning that employees don’t have rigid requirements on when they need to be in the office.
- Employers measure whether work is getting done and not the amount of time people spend in the office.
- Employees feel free to request telework.
Many people look enviously at people who work from home, but they sometimes struggle when they are given the same opportunity. Working from home involves more than just a good Internet connection and a dedicated home office. That’s a good start, but it takes much more to make this successful – especially in the long term.
The article Make working from home work for you lists “13 home working must-haves”. Not surprisingly, a good Internet connection and a comfortable work space do make the list, but so do some other less obvious things.
Charles Duhigg is a Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist, and the author of “Smarter Faster Better – The Secrets of Being Productive In Life and Business”. Charles was recently interviewed on the Virgin Podcast, in which he shared the following productivity tips:
- Motivate yourself
- Look for elements that you enjoy
- Focus on building mental models
- Set goals
- Don’t get caught up in decision making
- Draw on your own experiences
- Embrace panic
If you’re a leader or manager wondering whether to allow some of your team to work away from the office, we’ll give you 25 reasons why it might be the right thing to do – for you, them, and your future success.
Listen to the episode here:
The 25 Reasons
- No more commutes
– Australians spend 4.4 hours a week commuting
- Fewer interruptions and distractions
- Fewer sick days
– They even work when they’re sick!
Improve Work Flows/Performance
- Meetings become more efficient
- Collaboration is improved
- Deferred communication reduces wasted time
- You can operate 24/7
Happier, Healthier Workers
- They are happier
– You’re 87% more likely to love your job if you work from home
- And healthier
- They suffer less stress
– 82% of telecommuters report they have lower stress since they started telecommuting
- Not restricted by location
- Freelance talent markets open up
- Employees want it
– 70% of workers would rather telecommute than work in an office
– GWA suggests this number is higher
- Attract Gen Ys
- Be competitive
- Keep them when their personal circumstances change
- Help them move
- Keep Gen Ys
- Keep experienced workers
- Office costs
– GWA has an online calculator
- HR costs
Fit for the Future
- Natural fit for the skills of the future
– The Institute of the Future has identified 10 key skills of the future
- You’re preparing yourself for future distributed work
- You become a better leader
With the rising popularity of Out Of Office work, some enterprising gym and health club operators are expanding their lounges to provide members with co-working spaces. Club operators had noticed many of their members hanging out at the gym after a workout, using the lounge WiFi to get work done. So they decided to tap into this by offering more accommodating facilities for Out Of Office work. This is great for workers as it provides them with another venue for Out Of Office work, and it’s great for gym and health club operators because people who spend more time at the club also spend more money there.
Read the full WSJ article.
What do you think? Would you enjoy doing your work at the gym? Have youc ome across any innovative co-working spaces? Please let us know in the comments below…
There’s a lot of talk about the future of work, and much of it is centred around technology. But the biggest factor that will determine your success – or failure – is not technology, but people.
The article The Future Of Work Is Here: Are Your Managers Prepared? lists five aspects about the future of work that will affect your bottom line:
- Big Data
- Organizational Structure
We strongly believe organisations should be encouraging Out of Office work, because of its many advantages: flexibility, greater productivity, better work-life integration for employees, and so on. But it’s sad to see many Australian organisations haven’t embraced this idea. In fact, it’s just the opposite – especially for men.
A report by Bain & Company and Chief Executive Women found that women with flexible working arrangements are more likely to move into senior leadership roles, but men who do the same are penalised. As a result, many men in large organisations don’t take up flexible working arrangements because it harms their career.
Members of distributed teams value and expect opportunities for professional development just as much as in-office team members. As a leader or manager, you might need to be proactive and innovative to find ways to help accelerate the experience curve for your distributed team members.
Listen to the episode here:
As Out of Office work grows, managers and leaders have to learn new skills to work effectively and get the best from their teams. For experienced leaders in particular, the switch can be challenging because they are outside their comfort zone. Melissa Lamson shares five ideas for leaders in her article “How to effectively lead virtual teams”:
- Over-communicate about communication.
- Define roles.
- Build trust.
- Don’t forget the face-to-face and one-on-one.
- Respect cultural differences.