Dell Technologies shared insights to help organisations in Asia Pacific and Japan (APJ) navigate and lead their teams into the hybrid work future. Titled Leading the Next Hybrid Workforce, the paper offers expert insights to complement and build on the findings outlined in the Dell Technologies Remote Work Readiness (RWR) Index, which was launched early this year.
The paper investigates the role of organisations in designing a hybrid work future and captures actionable insights and recommendations from four experts – Australian RMIT lecturer Dr Julian Waters-Lynch, Japan-based management consultant Rochelle Kopp, NUS lecturer Dr Rashimah Rajah from Singapore, as well as Mallory Loone, co-founder of learning and engagement firm Work Inspires in Malaysia.
“With work today no longer anchored to a single place and moment in time, organisations must focus on outcomes and be ready to help their employees realise both their professional and personal roles effectively regardless of where they work. While eight in 10 employees across APJ expressed readiness for long-term remote work, there are still a number of factors that need to be addressed,” said Jean-Guillaume Pons, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Client Solutions Group, Asia Pacific, Japan and Greater China, Dell Technologies. “As we move into the future of work, we hope these insights and learnings can help organisations shape a hybrid, ready-for-anything workforce in line with their business needs.”
Dell Technologies’ Leading the Next Hybrid Workforce insight paper outlines three key imperatives that organisations must prioritise as they lay the foundations for a successful and sustainable hybrid work arrangement: Leadership, Structure and Culture.
All four experts underscored that leaders have a defining role to play in assembling the building blocks of a hybrid work future. They must clearly establish fundamental and innovative changes in their organisations to move forward, yet demonstrate empathy and compassion towards the struggles their employees likely face – such as the lack of in-person communication, as well as blurred boundaries between professional and personal lives.
Additionally, leaders must seek to establish trust with their employees and embrace an outcomes-driven mindset to avoid falling into the trap of micromanagement.
Today, organisations cannot simply approach hybrid work from an operational and technical standpoint and apply a one-size-fits-all model. Instead, employers must take the time to learn more about their employees’ preferences and needs to help them succeed in a remote work environment.
To co-design an inclusive hybrid workplace, experts recommended more open communication between employers and employees. They emphasised the need to find a balance between flexible working and regularity – in the form of dedicated time for team meetings, etc. – to preserve culture and social interaction.
The experts also called for more deliberate efforts towards culture-building and learning and development to preserve and spark creativity, innovation and collaboration. They cautioned against the risk of split cultures between home-based employees and those in the office, which may lead to tension in office dynamics and perceived imbalances between the two groups.
One suggestion is for employers to redirect their budget saved from daily office expenses and re-invest in dedicated and regular activities for social engagement among employees, such as team lunches or interactive training sessions. This helps create more opportunities for an organic exchange of ideas as well as the chance to foster trust and stronger working relationships between team members.