The Office is Where Your Laptop Is

The Office is Where Your Laptop Is

The Office Is Where Your Laptop Is.

The Office Is Where Your Laptop Is

Grant Ian Gamble

Grant Ian Gamble is an international business strategy and growth consultant, best-selling mindful leadership author and speaker. He works in a broad array of industries helping companies build teams, navigate change and drive growth. He has over 35 years of experience in the health and wellness sectors.

Similarly to the migration of retail to online, COVID has provoked a transition of thinking about where team members actually need to physically be in order to do their job well.

As we adjust our perceptions of what work looks like post COVID, there exists a gulf between what was and what will be when it comes to office geography.

Companies have already begun divesting themselves of offices and buildings they formally saw as essential in order to house their workforce. Conference rooms lie dormant and have been replaced by Zoom calls. The office phone system has similarly been replaced by cell phones, text messages and FaceTime.

I am familiar with this decentralized workspace, having personally spent many years on the road, working from airport lounges, toting a portable printer, relying on my trusty laptop and the internet to keep my work flowing, and presence felt by clients across a variety of timezones. I appreciate the benefits of being mobile and also the downside of these sometimes very isolated environments.

This is the dilemma companies face as they approach a more fractured workplace.

The benefits are proven for many roles to be fulfilled from home or a remote coworking space. Equally, there are many challenges that come with this dispersion of talent and team.

As such, companies, managers, team members and family units are all trying to adjust their expectations in this new work environment.

For companies, the possible financial upside of not maintaining the same degree of physical premises to house their team can be significant. Associated costs involved in supporting team members at home are typically a fraction of the cost of maintaining significant office infrastructure. The lost productivity associated with commutes alone offer a boon to companies.

This regained segment of team members’ days can be parlayed into spending more time with family and for recreation, which has proven benefits both physically and psychologically.

  • Prior to COVID, 20% of team members that could work remotely worked from home.

  • This number spiked to 71% in the Fall of 2020.

  • 54% of these team members would prefer to work from home going forward.

For many team members, the added flexibility of working remotely can be life changing. Similarly, for some, it can be very challenging.

Herein lies the challenge that exists for managers and HR teams. As with many things, what suits one team member may well not suit another.

Myers Briggs would suggest that strong extroverts gain energy from being around other people, whereas strong introverts need alone time, or time with a limited number of people, to recharge. For the extroverts on your team, working from home may feel like a prison sentence. For your introverts, their productivity might improve as a function of reduced demand to be engaged with people during their workday.

This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to navigating dispersed working environments.

Much has been written around these issues and topics, but the relative newness of these changes in expectations and functions make it a challenging environment for companies, managers and teams.

I have been working with several companies to re-tool their work environments and as conversations and revelations emanate from these processes, it is evident to me that this needs to be an organic process and the many conundrums presented by this upheaval will not be solved overnight, or in a vacuum.

By engaging managers, department heads, team members, and even family members in the conversation, finding the sweet spot for your company and team may not be as elusive as it appears.

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The Affinity Principle™ by Grant Gamble presents a formula for business success through a people-centric, mindful leadership approach.

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Simple Management Practice to Elevate Your Leadership

Simple Management Practice to Elevate Your Leadership

Grant Ian Gamble

Grant Ian Gamble is an international business strategy and growth consultant, best-selling mindful leadership author and speaker. He works in a broad array of industries helping companies build teams, navigate change and drive growth.

Studies show that positive feedback needs to be delivered at a ration of 6:1 in order to counterbalance constructive feedback.

While one does not equal one in the feedback stakes, you can’t stay on course without giving constructive feedback.

So how do you deliver all these positive pieces of encouragement when you’re deluged by emails and all the trappings of leadership that weigh you down on a daily basis?

Tom Peters talks about MBWA (Management by Wandering Around) in his book In Search of Excellence. He presents a great methodology to employ when seeking to catch your team members up to good things. It’s also a great way to get up and stretch your legs and see what’s really happening beyond the walls of your office.

MBWA refers to a management practice of spontaneous and unstructured visits on team members, departments, and locations.

Because these visits are unexpected, the team members who are focused on their tasks and responsibilities will become apparent (especially over time) and the “show ponies” (those people that wait till someone’s watching to make an effort) will equally become evident. The real magic is in gathering regular and robust data points.

Grant Ian Gamble Business Consulting | Author | Speaker | Coach | The Affinity Principle | Blog | Simple Management Practice to Elevate Your Leadership | MBWA

Be aware that random sampling can create some distortions that can only be corrected through continued diligence. MBWA is best applied generously! It is also important to make this non-routine activity a part of your routine.

In other words, you need to get out regularly to visit your team at various times of the day, and night (depending on your line of business).

When I managed businesses that operated 7 days a week over extended hours, I found that some of the most magical moments happened outside of my office hours. Being greeted by that bright and cheery ‘early opener’ at 5:25 AM in the morning was a treat. The act of opening the doors of a health club for those early morning exercisers was a delight in the right hands or a disaster in the hands of someone who’s not a morning person.

Catching that Manager on Duty jump-starting a customer’s car at 10pm at night was a magic moment not to be missed. The appreciation from that poor soul that had left their lights on probably eclipsed all my platitudes, but just getting to witness these acts of genuine kindness reinforced my need to be out and about catching my team doing great stuff!

Grant Ian Gamble Business Consulting | Author | Speaker | Coach | The Affinity Principle | Blog | Simple Management Practice to Elevate Your Leadership | MBWA

When I was managing a company that was shipping tens of thousands of items monthly, my regular visits to the shipping team was likely a welcome respite from the repetitive tasks that team handled, but it always offered great insights for me into the heartbeat of our company.

There are so many intangible benefits to be gleaned from these connections with your team. I have come to appreciate MBWA in all of my leadership roles.

Grant Ian Gamble Business Consulting | Author | Speaker | Business Consultant | Coach |The Affinity Principle | Best Seller LogoWant to learn more simple and effective ways to elevate your leadership? Pick up your copy of my new mindful leadership book, “The Affinity Principle.”

Want to Know Your Leadership Potential? Take this Leadership Appraisal!

The Affinity Principle Leadership Appraisal is a free benchmarking tool for you and your leadership team to gauge your individual and collective propensity to create Affinity within your organization.

The Leadership Appraisal is based on key questions asked of over 6,000 senior executives across the world in the Globe 2020 Report of CEO Leadership Behaviors and Effectiveness. These questions break down into 8 primary leadership dimensions that most influence top management team’s dedication and overall firm performance.

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Let's Connect!

COURSES & WORKSHOPS | SPEAKING | EVENTS | COACHING

Send an email via the form below or call to set up a free consultation. LET US KNOW IF YOU'D like to collaborate with us. MINDFUL LEADERSHIP PODCAST COMING SOON, BE OUR GUEST!

Or call 434.996.5510

Grant Ian Gamble Business Consulting | Author | Speaker | Business Consultant | Coach |The Affinity Principle | Best Seller Logo

The Affinity Principle™ by Grant Gamble presents a formula for business success through a people-centric, mindful leadership approach.

PEOPLE FIRST, ALWAYS™