The last two years have required companies and HR teams to rethink how we work. But the adaptation and evolving expectations of employees can’t be restricted to the impact of the pandemic. If companies are going to compete in the raging war on talent, HR strategies have to continually focus on the future of work.
Gauging employee needs and new expectations can’t be a one-and-done exercise. HR leaders need to regularly survey employees to understand their evolving perspectives.
In an article from HRExecutive, Angela Greenfeather, executive vice president and CHRO at mortgage company Mr. Cooper, shares that employers will be expected to create an “environment where people want to be–you have to prioritize the team member experience and activate a people-centric culture.”
Innovation will be critical – no longer can HR leaders rely on traditional industry best practices – they have to explore new ways to track employee satisfaction and employer brand positioning, and provide managers efficient ways to manage employee performance.
The last two years have been mentally challenging for employees – angst, differing opinions and personal experiences around racial inequities, civil unrest and the pandemic, make it difficult for employees to feel comfortable. Improved communication and conflict resolution techniques will be important areas of focus for teams looking to nurture better collaboration and cultures that embrace and encourage employees to bring their whole selves to work.
An article from HRMorning states, “HR leaders and front-line managers may need to focus on softer skills – such as teambuilding and conflict resolution – in 2022. As more employees come back to work in office spaces… managers may want to review collegiality and team performance expectations.”
Many companies that once thought remote work would be temporary are making changes to allow employees to work remotely permanently. But, in order for a remote work environment to be successful in the long-term, teams need to trust one another and their leaders.
As reported by Business Insider, in a webinar presented by Adobe, Tsedal Neeley, a business administration professor at Harvard Business School, outlined two types of trust that leaders must establish — cognitive trust, which is the understanding that one’s team members are reliable and competent, and emotional trust, or the understanding that others care about you.
The future of work isn’t going to end with the pandemic. Employees expect more from their employers and demand a workplace that values open communication and diverse perspectives.
HR leaders will need to test new ideas, gauge demand and evolving needs, and continually consider new approaches to employee engagement and performance management.
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