Organizational Psychologist Explains Why ‘Hybrid is the Future’ of the Workplace

Hybrid working models have become increasingly popular in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, which has forced millions of employees to work remotely for public health reasons.

As offices began to reopen as cases waned and vaccines became available, many companies have adopted a “hybrid” model, in which employees come into the office part-time.

“I don’t think we should eliminate offices altogether,” Adam Grant, an organizational psychologist at Wharton Business School and author of “Think Again,” told Yahoo Finance at Goldman Sachs’ 2022 10,000 Small Business Summit (video above). “But I think the evidence is really clear that as long as people show up half the week, they can work from anywhere the other half, and they’re more productive, more satisfied, more likely to be there. stay, no known cost for collaboration or relationships I don’t know why we are so keen to have everyone on site all the time.

A woman works on her laptop at a cafe in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, on April 24, 2019. (Photo by Robert Nickelsberg/Getty Images)

A February 2022 Gallup study of more than 140,000 American workers found that 42% of employees able to work remotely had a hybrid schedule, while 39% worked entirely from home. Of those employees able to work remotely, 60% prefer hybrid working.

“I think it’s something we need to rethink,” Grant said. “Hybrid is the future. I think hybrid is the precedent. There’s a lot of companies that have committed to getting back to business and then went back and said, ‘Wait a minute, this doesn’t work for us”. Let’s agree on a two or three day plan.

“If you don’t care about people’s quality of life, you don’t get quality work”

Data shows that giving employees such flexibility pays off — according to Owl Labs’ State of Remote Work 2021 report. Eighty-three percent of workers said they were at the same level of productivity, or more, working from home than working in the office, while 55% said they worked longer hours while working from home. being remote.

Several large companies have chosen to use a hybrid work plan for their employees, including big names like 3M (MMM), Coinbase (COIN), Lyft (LYFT), Spotify (SPOT), and Twitter (TWTR).

Grant noted that companies need strong leadership that is receptive to any employee concerns, such as a desire to transition to remote or hybrid working or concerns about toxic behaviors in the workplace.

A hybrid working model can provide significant benefits to employees, according to Owl Labs.  (Graphic: Owl Labs)

A hybrid working model can provide significant benefits to employees, according to Owl Labs. (Graphic: Owl Labs)

“I think one of the few benefits of the pandemic is that more and more people at the leadership and management level are starting to recognize that if you don’t care about people’s quality of life, you don’t don’t get quality work,” he said.

Nearly 3 in 4 workers said working from home even after the pandemic was better for their mental health, the Owl Labs report notes.

“What I’ve found is much more effective is to go deeper and talk about the issues you see,” Grant said. “So if I say ‘there are maybe some cultural gaps that I think we might want to work on, what do you think?’ I’m not just pretending that I’m open to feedback, I’m actually proving that I can handle it.

Adriana Belmonte is a reporter and editor and covers politics and health care politics for Yahoo Finance. You can follow her on Twitter @adrianambells and contact her at [email protected]

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Aubrey L. Morgan