On Saturday July 17, many of our ValuePartners from Belgium and The Netherlands met for a great sunny barbecue. For many attendants, it was the first time they have ever met their colleagues in real life. For each of them, it was a great get together. For us, it is the proof that real-life contacts are an important binding factor in a team that is virtually recruited, and digitally cooperating.
Over the past year, we have been able to build a group of almost 30 enthusiastic advisors and coaches from the UK, Belgium, The Netherlands, Scandinavia, and the Baltics. This all happened online, in calls and video meetings. Online, we already felt that there was a great vibe in the team. But still, we felt that something was missing. The real-life contacts on last Saturday’s barbecue made a huge difference for the Belgium and Dutch ValuePartners. The positive vibes from the individuals have now become positive group vibes. The past days, we received messages from the partners that could not attend. Next year, we hope to bring them all together.
Combine virtual with real
What we have witnessed in our little group, leads to an important advice for all companies that are trying to reorganise their team work and who are now experimenting with a mixture of office and home work. Yes, home work is perfectly feasible. Even stronger, we were able to recruit, to bond, and to cooperate digitally. But don’t forget that this little bit of real-life physical contact does much more than icing the cake. It ensures the virtually created bonds are lasting for the long term.
What happens when individuals go back to the office?
On top of the necessary bonding, there are more aspects to be taken into account when collaborators are coming back to the office. The leadership style might have to change, because people have gotten used to a more independent way of working. On the other hand, we discovered that many people have lost connection with the greater vision of their company. And, beside the fear of losing their job, we see a lot of people doubting whether they would want keep their job.
For most managers and leaders, there are a lot of challenges on the horizon. That’s why we created a back-to-the-office advisory and coaching offering.