Over a year ago in March 2020, we collectively faced a change to our ways of working that none of us was
completely prepared for. My life at the time was organized around work-related travel and face-to-face meetings.
Through the pandemic and the past year, I was fortunate enough to make several new connections and take on new board responsibilities. While I found myself blessed enough to be far more productive than I had been before,
I wonder what the next normal will look like and with due respect to Robert Zemeckis, if we should be returning “back” to our future?
Given the learnings we have all had, can we gather our shared experiences and move forward to the next? Should business leaders expect the office to be exactly as it was before when, with our collective experiences, we have an opportunity to build a digital workplace that also allows us to be engaged and productive?
Even as many of us contemplate what work-life after the pandemic will feel like:
We know that the design of our future work arrangements needs to be based on what the work requires from us and the scale of our organization.
According to Gerdman (2021), corporations may ignore employee inputs into the future of work at their own peril.
Some leaders according to an article by Dill (2021) say that you must be physically present to be productive. If you aren't in the business of leasing out workspace and are instead leading a technology company making digitalization possible, this may be a unique time to explore how your technology can be leveraged to help all of us become more engaged and productive no matter where we work from.
I’ve learned, like Ogg (2020), that I don’t have to always travel to do business and that my personal productivity increases greatly when I’m not spending a lot of my energy and time traveling.
I've found that technology allows me to be more productive than before. Some meeting management tools allow me to collaborate even better than I could before!
These are learnings I will continue to use even when we can meet face to face.
For me, an agenda for a meeting is critical to achieving outcomes, and Huddl provides data-driven recommendations.
By choosing to make my notes public, all meeting attendees can collaborate and engage in meeting actions, tasks, and next steps or plans. It really feels like a working session. Outcomes are better when everyone leaves a meeting with the same understanding.
Huddl allows me to take notes very simply, in real-time. Convert speech to text where needed, and annotate my notes into actions that can be searched and tracked, by event, date, or keyword.
Notes and actions are automatically tracked and emailed to attendees with a single click. The feature to search through my past notes helps me organize my actions and plans, and also look back on when decisions were made, or review my own actions as I prepare for follow-ups.
Meeting set up is a breeze and directly from my calendar by setting the location as @huddl. Huddl auto-notifies me of my next meeting, and starts my next meeting on time!
Employers are exploring a hybrid model that includes a mix of remote and in-person work (Kupp, 2021)., while some employers want their employees “back” in the office once the pandemic ends, others are calling remote work an aberration according to a news report (Dill, 2021). Ultimately, every leader and team will have to determine the best path for their ecosystem as they prepare for the next phase of work.
I believe we can work together to build a future with our shared learnings. Leverage technology, towards building a more inclusive, engaged, and collaborative team.
I’m curious to learn about the experiences you have gathered during the pandemic.
Especially those that you would like to continue to hold on to as we move forward to our next normal. What are some of your learnings and hacks from the past year?
Gerdman, D. (2021, March 8). COVID Killed the Traditional Workplace. What Should Companies Do Now? Https://Hbswk.Hbs.Edu/. https://hbswk.hbs.edu/item/covid-killed-the-traditional-workplace-what-should-companies-do-now
Dill, K. (2021, May 12). WEWORK CEO SAYS LEAST ENGAGED EMPLOYEES ENJOY WORKING FROM HOME. The Wall Street Journal.https://www.wsj.com/articles/wework-ceo-says-workers-who-want-back-into-the-office-are-the-most-engaged-11620837018
Ogg, S. (2020, July 8). My 2020 Productivity Hack. Https://Www.Linkedin.Com.https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/my-2020-productivity-hack-sandy-ogg/
Great meetings! Meet less, do more. (n.d.). Https://Www.Huddl.Ai. Retrieved July 19, 2021, from https://www.huddl.ai
Kupp, H. (2021, June 15). The hybrid how-to: How leaders can embrace flexible working models. Https://Futureforum.Com. https://futureforum.com/2021/06/15/the-hybrid-how-to/