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Hybrid training: integration into the pandemic

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Nothing has been the same at work, it seems, since the start of the pandemic. And that also applies to training newcomers and welcoming them to your organization, of course.

Many companies are now trying to make working arrangements more flexible, allowing staff to spend part of their time in the office and part at home. But that has left many employers wondering how they can apply this hybrid model to processes like training new employees.

The answer is first, make sure you have the base frame in place.

This means that clarity and focus are basic requirements for hybrid work in changing environments, says Katrin Glanzel, author and collaborative leadership consultant.

Staff need these tips to be able to navigate the virtual work environment and also the physical workplace.

So make sure new team members know when they will be in the office or work and when they will be working from home.

Also introduce them to the two ways of working and make sure they know where their workplace is, whether teams are checking in online somehow when working remotely and how. access these areas.

Make sure people know the answers to these questions and are not asking the question.

Additionally, beyond making sure the technical equipment is present, Glatzel says new team members should also be familiar with the software and tools.

Finally, she says, be sure to set up a meeting so people can get to know the team, but don’t worry, it doesn’t matter whether it’s happening online or in person.

Buddy programs

Alexander Hein, who runs a consulting firm, recommends that you set up specific sponsorships for the reception and integration of new staff, so that the newcomer always knows the person to whom he can turn to ask questions. Questions.

Fabian Treiber has also studied the onboarding processes and found that “twinning programs” are always welcome and generate a positive response.

He says that often comments in company surveys show employees have networking issues – but matchmaking programs where a new team member is assigned a fixed contact person can help.

It’s also important to make sure your business is clear about flexible working models, which can otherwise quickly become confusing, if people don’t know who is where and when.

Plan ahead

Glatzel suggests making sure you plan four weeks in advance, recognizing that anything that happens in the future can be difficult to keep up with.

She recommends using a calendar to make a four week plan that shows who is where and when.

Often times, teams also have set days when everyone meets in the office.

Train newcomers the same way, says Glatzel. If generally the work is a combination of going to the office in person and working remotely, then organize the training this way as well, so that people do not feel too comfortable with one or the other. other.

Exactly how you balance the two elements – working face to face and working remotely – within training depends on your company, your industry, the setup of your staff and your employees themselves, explains Hein. .

He often says, roughly balancing these with two days on one and three days on the other works well, that is, two or three days at home and the rest at work.

This allows for a good balance between work in the office and at home.

He notes that it’s important to coordinate with the whole team from the start and make sure the planning is fair to everyone involved.

Build an atmosphere of trust

The main task of a manager in the onboarding process is to provide clarity and direction, explains Glatzel. It means explaining how you and your business understand what hybrid work means, and when you expect people to show up in person – as well as clarifying your expectations of the job.

Managers are also responsible for creating opportunities for contact and communication within the team. Beyond making sure everyone gets to know each other, it can also mean bringing individual team members together on particular projects.

In addition, managers should discuss their personal circumstances with new team members, says Hein, as they are important and essential for successful remote work.

During this time, the task of the team is to be open and accessible, explains Glatzel. He should focus on the “feel good” factor, adds Hein. All of this should help create a positive and confident atmosphere from the start.

It’s also important to keep team building in mind, even if hybrid working models are in place, Glatzel explains. She says the formats for this type of activity have changed and the combination of virtual and real versions is particularly demanding.

She says for now, if you’re planning a team event, choose one option or the other – in person or online. – dpa / Amélie Breitenhuber