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November 18, 2022
6
min read

It Take a Community to Build Workplace Culture

Hybrid workers are thriving while hybrid managers feel stressed and disconnected. The balance of freedom and connectivity is helping employees feel fulfilled. However, managers feel distant from their teams and less connected to leadership. Culture can bridge the gap and help teams and managers reconnect.

Samuel Leeman
Marketing Manager

Typically, leaders and managers have had a large influence on company culture. After all, they lead meetings, interact with multiple teams, and essentially set the precedent for how to ‘walk the talk’ of the company’s culture. However, in day-to-day dealings, employees see specific pain points and have different perspectives of situations that managers either miss at first glance or don’t see at all. On top of that, it's a large burden for a cultural climate to be set by only a handful of individuals.

Typically, leaders and managers have had a large influence on company culture. After all, they lead meetings, interact with multiple teams, and essentially set the precedent for how to ‘walk the talk’ of the company’s culture. However, in day-to-day dealings, employees see specific pain points and have different perspectives of situations that managers either miss at first glance or don’t see at all. On top of that, it's a large burden for a cultural climate to be set by only a handful of individuals.

Hybrid Workers: Balancing Connectivity and Independence

Hybrid workers are thriving and "23% of U.S. hybrid workers strongly agree that they feel connected to their organization, compared with 20% of employees overall." So what's different about hybrid workers? Well, the increased connectedness is likely caused by the difference between the two settings:

1) In person, hybrid workers have the opportunity to collaborate with their team and build rapport.

2) At home, hybrid workers set their own boundaries and create their own work style.

They feel a sense of community, in both their team and the overall company, while also being an active decision maker. During their remote work time, they are able to figure out what works best for them and play to those strengths. These are both factors that play a role in the happiness and well-being of employees.

Prior to COVID, employees craved these things, but managers were typically the loudest voices in the room. They were the ones deciding how their team would operate and the overall workflow. While many employees want to be involved in decision-making, a lot of them don't feel comfortable dissenting or don't feel that their opinions will be heard. This not only isolates individuals within one team but can lead to the siloing of teams across the organization. All of this leads to a lack of collaboration, a lack of community, and a lack of culture.

Hybrid Managers: Leadership Through Listening

While hybrid workers are happy and feel connected, a recent Gallup article reveals that hybrid managers feel even less connected than hybrid leaders. Managers used to be able to meet in person with members of their team daily and they had more support from others in leadership. They were able to reach out to other leaders with questions and even shadow them for more hands-on experience.

Now hybrid work has made connectivity with their team and accessibility to leadership mentors more difficult. Also, throughout the pandemic, they faced pressure to support and provide whatever their team needed to keep things running smoothly. Leaders who are unhappy, stressed, or anxious can have negative effects on their teams even when they are putting their team's needs above their own stress management.

The Path Towards a Better Culture

The main takeaway is the success of the team is a responsibility that cannot be shouldered by one individual. Hybrid workers have proven that employees can be productive and feel fulfilled through self-knowledge and engaging in decision-making instead of only moving according to one person's plan. After all, nobody knows your work style better than you.

Working together as a collective covers more bases, provides a well-rounded plan, and prevents the stress of burdening one individual with all the decision-making responsibilities. Managers can continue to help guide teams, answer their questions, and keep them on track while supporting free-flowing ideas, different work styles, and independence. Working together as a team in this way, being aware of your needs, stress points, and strengths is what will ultimately lead to success and a culture that everyone wants to be a part of.