Homeworking has kept many heads above water during the toughest COVID-19 times. Digital working has become a standard. Companies are committed to maximizing the productivity of their dispersed teams. But how do you ensure the growth and development of your employees in a distributed work environment?
The crisis situation that COVID-19 brought upon the whole world has meant that homeworking is no longer perceived as a (unnecessary) luxury. Working digitally became the lifebuoy for companies to stay productive. The change requires a lot of effort on the part of employees, especially when the children are at home as well. Nevertheless, according to most polls, a majority of people would like to continue trading in at least a few days per week at the office for digital working from a distance.
But shouldn't a manager have to worry about decreasing productivity or at least less interaction between team members, and therefore less engagement?
Well, not necessary. Humans are social beings and they have an unprecedented wealth of communication channels. By learning to collaborate fully on tools such as Microsoft Teams, long-winded emails make way for short thread and chat messages. Lengthy meetings that, until recently, required everyone's physical presence, are replaced by video calls. In addition, there is still a lot of innovation yet to come that will continue to enhance the benefits of digital working.
The online workplace is here to stay for the long term. For an organization it now comes down to providing a digital platform where everyone feels at home. So, rather today than tomorrow, it's best to take stock of the prevailing workplace culture and translate it into the online environment in which people work (together). For example, ask yourself what need there is for informal interaction between colleagues during homework. Also, offer the necessary coaching and training on digital hard and soft skills, so that no one gets left behind.
Speaking of training: how do people in your organization develop their talent and the necessary knowledge to grow?
Developing knowledge in an organization can be done in several ways. In previous blog articles we already discussed the benefits of blended learning and the value of microlearning. The quantity, but in many cases also the quality of online workshops is increasing since COVID-19. Digital learning is of course not only possible thanks to digital content that you offer to your team members yourself. The public online offering of videos, wikis and articles also contributes to the development of employees. In short, we not only live in times of digital working, but also of digital learning.
As with daily online work, the key to long-term success with digital learning is a platform tailored to your organization. In addition to mandatory training, does your learning platform also offer your employees the opportunity to informally exchange information and knowledge (social learning)? After all, learning from face-to-face interaction with colleagues is generally reduced when working from home. An LXP or Learning Experience Platform is therefore a very useful addition to any existing learning approach. Employees will make grateful make use of it.
It is important that a learning platform also offers managers a number of crucial opportunities. Picking up signals when team members are encountering difficulties, for example, is not always easy because of the physical distance. Accurate reporting is therefore extremely valuable. Doesn't digital learning have the expected positive impact on performance and productivity? In that case, it is important for a manager to enter into a timely dialogue with the employee to discuss obstacles and find solutions together.
Is your organization ready for the new normal? Are you looking for a robust solution to secure the long-term productivity and growth of your team members, whatever the context? Neo Learning will work with you to develop a resilient learning strategy based on your learning platform or the Totara Talent Experience Platform.
Feel free to contact us for a free discussion.