May 29, 2020
Rebecca East

5 things managers will need to do differently

Lockdown may be gradually coming to an end, but remote working is here to stay. It’s going to create a whole new set of demands for managers, and many will see their roles change dramatically in the near future. Here we look at what exactly is going to change for managers – and offer some guidance as to how to prepare for it.

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Remote working is here to stay

5 things managers will need to do differently

Lockdown may be gradually coming to an end, but remote working is here to stay. It’s going to create a whole new set of demands for managers, and many will see their roles change dramatically in the near future.

Those businesses who have already moved to a people-centric approach will be at an advantage, with new responsibilities placing individual needs at the heart of management structure.

So what exactly is going to change for managers – and how can they prepare for it?

Managers need to manage an adjusted and people centric workforce

The role of a manager will be less about looking over shoulders and checking in on employees, and more about getting the best out of individuals, for better overall engagement and productivity. 

This has been a growing trend over recent years, and people-centric business have already started this shift. But for those who haven’t, it could be something of a shock to their managers, especially if their new role isn’t clearly defined.

Businesses will need to support managers with a structure that enables them to fulfil this role successfully.

They’ll be fundamental to creating an experience

Businesses put a lot of thought, effort and funding into creating an employee experience that attracts and maintains talent. But for some, this experience is very much grounded in the office environment: creating a space that is comfortable, productive and inspiring, and bringing people together in social areas.

With more employees working remotely, this experience will need to be communicated differently, and managers will hold the key to doing so successfully. They will need to be the link between the business and their organisation, communicating culture, values and character to keep teams connected.

They’ll need to see the whole person, not just their work persona

This situation has given us all a new appreciation of our colleagues’ individual circumstances, and this has to be maintained after lockdown is over.

Managers will need to understand who people really are, not just who they present at work, and build that into their management approach.

Most workplaces are long past the days of ‘clock in, clock out’. People’s work and personal lives are blending more than ever. Understanding this, and helping people to use this to their advantage, is essential to creating a more engaged, productive workforce, whatever the circumstances.

Awareness of wellbeing will be a must

This should have been a focal point before lockdown, but it became vital during a tumultuous time for employees working from home while juggling the emotional and practical toll of a pandemic. And it needs to continue.

Managers who are aware of their team’s mental health and wellbeing will be better placed to support them and address issues before they become problems. Tackling difficult conversations around this topic regularly will make a big impact on individuals’ sense of wellbeing and fulfilment, with a wide-reaching impact on the business as a whole.

But managers need to be supported to do this effectively. They need to know how to ask the right questions, and how to take the right action. Which brings us to our next point…

Managers will need to talk more – and make it count

The term people-centric gets bandied about a lot, but a truly people-first approach needs to go beyond simply ‘talk more’. Those conversations need to count.

Managers need the confidence to ask the right questions, and need to feel empowered to convert those conversations into actions. Confidence, clarity and actions that make a difference are essential for any effective conversation, but it’s particularly important with remote workforces, where those day to day collaborations are more difficult.

A tool like OpenBlend is used in progressive and people-centred businesses, but it is now an absolute essential to every organisation. It brings structure to people-centric management, giving clearer goals and accountability to both managers and their teams, and making sure that the right conversations take place.

If you’d like to talk through how your OpenBlend tool can help with these changes or would like information on setting up a new OpenBlend platform, call us on 01628 613 040.

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