Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub https://www.blendmeinc.com/ Your #1 Source for Remote and Hybrid Work Resources. en Fri, 12 Jul 2024 16:37:54 -0400 Tue, 09 Jul 2024 03:30:00 -0400 Responsibility At Work? Why This Timeless Principle Remains an Essential Element for Remote and Hybrid Companies https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/responsibility-work-why-timeless-principle-remains-essential-element-remote-and-hybrid <p>Today, many organizations have struggled to cultivate and sustain a thriving remote workforce. At the same time, there are seemingly countless “recommendations” and “best practices” swirling around for how to get the most out of remote employees.</p> <p>In some ways, and perhaps ironically, the surplus of convoluted information out there has made it <em>more</em> difficult to succeed in this management challenge. Indeed, it seems that our industry’s over-analytical tendencies have obfuscated our view of what’s most important at work.</p> <p>When you boil it down, what truly are the most critical ingredients for making location-independent companies flourish? Where exactly should organizations direct their strategic focus?</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/responsibility-work-why-timeless-principle-remains-essential-element-remote-and-hybrid Tue, 09 Jul 2024 03:30:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc How to Effectively Manage a Remote Workforce https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/how-effectively-manage-remote-workforce <p>Although many companies were remote or hybrid by design before 2020, the pandemic forced many organizations to transition to remote work. Most companies didn’t have the luxury of time or much support to make the leap.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/how-effectively-manage-remote-workforce Tue, 25 Jun 2024 03:30:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc 5 Best Practices for Mindful Remote Offboarding https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/5-best-practices-mindful-remote-offboarding <p>Curious about best practices for remote offboarding? This article covers how transparent communication can reduce workplace anxiety, effective strategies for returning company property, and creating memorable digital farewell experiences. How can these practices foster a healthy workplace culture?</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/5-best-practices-mindful-remote-offboarding Tue, 11 Jun 2024 03:30:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Build a Connected Remote Workplace with a People-First Onboarding Strategy https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/build-connected-remote-workplace-people-first-onboarding-strategy <p>Remote work has become the norm throughout the years. Though several pivotal events have reshaped our human resource practices, the onboarding process continues to be a key component that defines the employee experience. Shaping a smooth employee onboarding plan benefits small businesses in many ways.&nbsp;</p> <p>Picture this! A team member stepping into a remote workspace embarking on an adventure beyond tasks and reading handbooks. This article will help you explore onboarding tips and tricks that help create a people-centric remote onboarding plan.&nbsp;</p> <p>Join us on this exploration as we uncover the changing landscape of onboarding, highlighting the balance between processes and fostering authentic human connections. Discussing the good, the bad, and the best practices that can help sustain your onboarding process so that it may never reach an ‘ugly’ phase.&nbsp;</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/build-connected-remote-workplace-people-first-onboarding-strategy Tue, 28 May 2024 03:30:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Why Remote Work isn’t Going Anywhere According to Remote HR Consultants https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/why-remote-work-isnt-going-anywhere-according-remote-hr-consultants <p>In 2020, the pandemic stopped us in our tracks. I remember the moment I heard there was a “shelter-in-place” requirement in California. Going for a walk felt eerily like a scene from Zombieland —empty streets, but people were hungry people, hungry for…connection.</p> <p>Many organizations turned to remote work to manage their workforce in the aftermath of the pandemic. And a lot worried about what that would do to our craving for connection. Years later, the question I’m hearing as a Remote Workforce Consultant from businesses worldwide is: Should we return to the traditional office setup or embrace remote work for the long haul? Which is best for business and for our employees?</p> <p>As an HR consultant and Head of People for a fully-remote, global company, deeply entrenched in navigating the evolving landscape of remote workplace dynamics, I am here to address the concerns and misconceptions surrounding remote work and shed light on why it isn't just a passing trend but a transformative force here to stay.&nbsp;</p> <p>And, why <em>you</em> might want to consider ditching the hybrid or in-office models…for good.&nbsp;</p> <p>Many companies are grappling with the uncertainty of whether to revert to the conventional office model or continue with remote work arrangements or some combination of the two with a hybrid workforce. The main question executives are asking is how can we ensure productivity and employee engagement.</p> <p>At Blend Me, as remote work specialists, our approach centers around understanding the desires and needs of both organizations and their team members. We believe that remote work is not only a viable <em>option </em>but also can be beneficial for businesses in numerous ways, and likely a great choice for most any organization to fully commit to (and likely to make your employees happy, engaged, and staying with you for a long time).</p> <p>Remote work ushered in a paradigm shift, which we’ll explore below, empowering employees with flexibility and autonomy while fostering productivity and results-driven approaches.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/why-remote-work-isnt-going-anywhere-according-remote-hr-consultants Tue, 14 May 2024 03:30:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc What is a People Operations Consultant? https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/what-people-operations-consultant <p>When it comes to your business, your employees are one of your most valuable assets. They execute your vision, interact with your customers, support your goals, and inevitably determine your success or failure. So, it’s no surprise that you should be invested in your employees’ happiness.</p> <p>That’s where People Operations comes in. People ops is all about creating an environment where your employees feel supported and valued, which is especially important for remote and hybrid companies. While many businesses have a full-time people operations manager on staff, a people operations consultant can provide the same level of people-centric expertise for startups and small businesses on a part-time basis.</p> <p>So, what does a people operations consultant do? This article will explain the role of a people operations consultant, the benefits of hiring one, and the signs that indicate it’s time to bring one on board.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/what-people-operations-consultant Sat, 04 May 2024 03:30:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Who Are Fractional HR Leaders? And How Can You Become One? https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/who-are-fractional-hr-leaders-and-how-can-you-become-one <p>The last few years have shown a rise in fractional leadership. In short, fractional leadership entails an organization hiring an experienced professional on a part-time, contract basis to help with organizational leadership responsibilities. For more, <a href="https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/what-fractional-hr-leadership">check out this blog post</a>.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>A quick LinkedIn search results in over 100k people with the title “Fractional HR Leader” in their profile. But who are fractional HR leaders, what’s their professional background, and how did they land in these roles?</p> <p>We’ll address these questions by exploring the career experience and skills of fractional HR leaders. And we’ll also offer some guidance for HR professionals who are interested in following that path.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/who-are-fractional-hr-leaders-and-how-can-you-become-one Tue, 23 Apr 2024 03:30:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc What to Look for in a Fractional HR Leader https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/what-look-fractional-hr-leader <p>So, you’ve recently decided that your business has developed a clear need for hiring a fractional HR leader. First off, congrats! This is a big, strategic decision that has the potential to significantly elevate the experience of your employees, and that, if done well, will offer dividends to your broader organization. But now that you’ve made this initial decision to hire a fractional HR leader, you next need to determine exactly <em>who</em> to seek for this position.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/what-look-fractional-hr-leader Tue, 16 Apr 2024 03:30:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc How Much Does a Fractional Executive Cost? https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/how-much-does-fractional-executive-cost <p>As a CEO, what’s one thing that’s always on your mind? You might be thinking about your clients or customers, right? Or maybe your team? And the one thing that always lingers in the back of your mind? Your budget.&nbsp;</p> <p>Well, if it’s not on <em>your</em> mind, your CFO is almost certainly regularly in your ear or in your executive meetings bringing up revenue, expenses, and how to maximize the bottom line.&nbsp;</p> <p>So when the topic of hiring for a human resources professional comes up, usually one of the first places you’ll start is asking “What is our budget for this role?” or “How much does an HR executive really cost?”</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/how-much-does-fractional-executive-cost Thu, 11 Apr 2024 03:03:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Is it Time For Your Business to Hire a Fractional HR Leader? https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/it-time-your-business-hire-fractional-hr-leader <h2>Why HR Matters&nbsp;</h2> <p>Over the past decade I’ve witnessed the role of human resources transform from what was once perceived to be a strictly administrative function to a strategic arm of any well-functioning business. HR leaders are earning their <a href="https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbeshumanresourcescouncil/2021/09/10/four-reasons-hr-deserves-a-seat-at-the-table/?sh=58463cb6690c">“seat at the table”</a> by connecting business strategy to the actual humans doing the work.&nbsp;</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/it-time-your-business-hire-fractional-hr-leader Tue, 09 Apr 2024 03:30:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc What’s the Difference Between Fractional HR Leaders and HR Consultants? https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/whats-difference-between-fractional-hr-leaders-and-hr-consultants <p>Leaders of startups and small businesses are often forced to balance many competing priorities. A scaling company often faces challenges that pertain to human resources, spanning from compliance issues to hurdles in talent acquisition.&nbsp;</p> <p>The absence of an established HR structure can lead to missteps that impede growth, giving rise to issues like poor employee culture, high turnover rates, and potentially costly legal complications. It’s important for senior leaders to recognize and avoid these pitfalls while growing their organization.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/whats-difference-between-fractional-hr-leaders-and-hr-consultants Thu, 04 Apr 2024 03:00:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc The Benefits of Hiring a Fractional HR Leader https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/benefits-hiring-fractional-hr-leader <p>For small businesses and startups in particular, every dollar counts. Hiring a full-time Chief Human Resources Officer or Chief People Officer may not be a commitment you can make – or need to make – at this point.</p> <p>You’ve probably considered that there’s a cost savings associated with hiring fractional HR leadership. However, hiring a fractional HR leader is an option that provides many benefits for your company beyond that, including flexibility and the ability to tap into the specialized expertise your company needs at different stages of growth.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/benefits-hiring-fractional-hr-leader Tue, 02 Apr 2024 03:30:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc What is Fractional HR Leadership? https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/what-fractional-hr-leadership <p>You may have heard of an emerging trend in business known as <a href="https://www.blendmeinc.com/solutions/fractional-hr-leadership">fractional HR leadership</a>. If you’ve encountered this term but haven’t quite wrapped your head around what it means, rest assured, the math is quite simple: Fractional HR provides companies with the leadership they need for a fraction of the cost. It’s a flexible and effective strategy that’s gaining considerable buzz.&nbsp;</p> <p>In this article, we’ll clarify what fractional HR leadership is, why it’s so popular, and how it’s reshaping the approach businesses take toward human resources.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/what-fractional-hr-leadership Mon, 11 Mar 2024 00:45:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Remote Workers Are Not Losers https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/remote-workers-are-not-losers <p>Imagine the mix of anticipation and excitement as you, a dedicated remote worker, make your way to downtown Minneapolis for the city revitalization announcement. Eager to hear about the upcoming projects from the mayor himself, your enthusiasm quickly turns to disbelief when the mayor labels you as a “loser.” Yes, that's right—the&nbsp;<a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lATVIOXThDY&amp;t=244s">mayor dismissively stigmatizes remote workers</a>&nbsp;as “losers who stay home sitting on their couch with their nasty cat blanket diddling on their laptop.”&nbsp; The troubling trend continues with leaders perpetuating the stigma that workers can’t be productive from a place other than the brick-and-mortar walls of a downtown office building.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/remote-workers-are-not-losers Wed, 14 Feb 2024 00:30:00 -0500 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc New Year, New Leadership Mindset: Embracing Change in the Workplace https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/new-year-new-leadership-mindset-embracing-change-workplace <p>As we prepare to kickoff the new year, what are your leadership plans? Are you sitting down with one day left of this calendar year reflecting on what you accomplished, setting goals around what you can do new, better, or differently? I am. In fact, I printed off a goal setting template for my family so that each of us can document such things. But as I prepare for that little family exercise (which is a big hit, if you’re wondering) I find my fingers typing this.</p> <p>One goal of mine this year as a business partner and entrepreneur is to write more content. I find the process of writing helps me release, reflect, and rejuvenate. And this is a perfect time to do just that. Nothing like ringing in the new year to get the juices flowing. Although, side note, I am a big supporter in doing things as they arise and not waiting for a silly resolution to take control of what you want done. Goals are&nbsp;<a href="https://www.forbes.com/sites/ashleystahl/2021/12/09/this-new-years-set-goals-not-resolutions/?sh=2c7612e11ece">action-oriented</a>&nbsp;unlike resolutions.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/new-year-new-leadership-mindset-embracing-change-workplace Wed, 03 Jan 2024 14:54:00 -0500 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Amazon's Return-to-Office Mandate: A Misguided Decision without Data-Driven Support https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/amazons-return-office-mandate-misguided-decision-without-data-driven-support <p>Amazon, the global e-commerce giant, is renowned for its data-driven approach to decision making. However, a recent internal staff meeting regarding the company's decision to mandate working from the office revealed a surprising lack of data to support this move. Business Insider’s Eugene Kim wrote an article that revealed what one <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/amazon-executive-no-data-to-support-return-to-office-mandate-2023-8">SVP at Amazon said during a meeting</a>. In this blog, I will dive into five major points from their article and highlight some of the key flaws in Amazon's decision-making process.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/amazons-return-office-mandate-misguided-decision-without-data-driven-support Wed, 02 Aug 2023 09:07:47 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Celebrating 10 Years with Blend Me, Inc: Reflections on Remote Work Success https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/celebrating-10-years-blend-me-inc-reflections-remote-work-success <p>As Blend Me, Inc. celebrates its 10th year of service, Chief Officers <a href="https://www.blendmeinc.com/people/jennifer-cameron">Jennifer Cameron</a> and <a href="https://www.blendmeinc.com/people/kaleem-clarkson">Kaleem Clarkson </a>reflect on their passion for remote work and the journey that brought them here. In an intimate interview, they delve into what drives their dedication to help startups and small businesses create efficient and successful remote or hybrid-remote workplaces.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/celebrating-10-years-blend-me-inc-reflections-remote-work-success Mon, 03 Jul 2023 14:03:42 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc From Remote to the Return-to-Office: Lessons from the Farmers Group Dilemma https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/remote-return-office-lessons-farmers-group-dilemma <p>As the world gradually emerges from the grips of the COVID-19 pandemic, organizations are grappling with the challenges of transitioning back to in-person work. However, one company's recent decision has brought the complexities of this transition into sharp focus. Farmers Group, an insurance company, made a controversial policy reversal that sparked intense employee outrage. The Wall Street Journal broke the story in their article, <a href="https://on.wsj.com/3qxgzJJ">A New CEO Says Employees Can’t Work Remotely After All, and They Revolt</a>. Let us look at some of the key themes and explore the missteps made by Farmers Group and the lessons that can be learned from their experience.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/remote-return-office-lessons-farmers-group-dilemma Wed, 07 Jun 2023 16:08:18 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Remote Work's Impact on the Employer-Employee Relationship https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/remote-works-impact-employer-employee-relationship <p>In recent years, the relationship between employers and employees has undergone significant changes. There’s no one true cause behind this shift, but several factors driving it to include changes in technology, globalization, and shifts in the labor market. The traditional top-down hierarchy of management has evolved into a more collaborative and inclusive approach to leadership. The employer-employee relationship has become more complex and dynamic with societal changes and technological advancements. What has changed in the workforce, how it’s changed the employer-employee relationship, and what it could mean for the professional world moving forward?&nbsp;</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/remote-works-impact-employer-employee-relationship Tue, 28 Mar 2023 14:31:16 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc 5 Steps to Build Social Connections in the Workplace https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/5-steps-build-social-connections-workplace <p>Employee connection is about more than an event photo on a company’s LinkedIn page. Sure, the smiling faces may convey that a good time was had by all, but true workplace connection is more than a single experience.</p> <p>Dr. Emma Seppala, Ph.D., of Stanford Medicine <a href="http://ccare.stanford.edu/uncategorized/connectedness-health-the-science-of-social-connection-infographic/">writes</a> that “social connectedness generates a positive feedback loop of social, emotional, and physical well-being.” People who feel more connected to others are more trusting and cooperative, and, in turn, receive more trust and cooperation.&nbsp;</p> <p>Connectedness is a core, basic need for humans, and feeling disconnected in the workplace can lead to disengagement, isolation, and employee churn. Employees and the company alike will benefit from intentional efforts to promote social connection.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/5-steps-build-social-connections-workplace Fri, 14 Oct 2022 00:00:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Loneliness, Connectedness, and Employee Engagement https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/loneliness-connectedness-and-employee-engagement <p>Critics of remote work are quick to point out that working from home will lead to loneliness. The intent is clear: affirm the decisions of return-to-office advocates, assuring them that they have the employees’ best interests in mind.</p> <p>But here’s the rub: employees can also be lonely in the office if they don’t feel connected to their teams and/or communities. It’s easy to correlate loneliness with physical isolation, but that isn’t always the case.&nbsp;</p> <p>If employees are lonely, it can impact their physical and mental health — which in turn are tied to employee engagement and work performance. More than ever, companies are considering employee well-being. A <a href="https://futureworkplace.com/ebooks/2021-hr-sentiment-survey/">2021 survey</a> found that 68% of senior HR leaders rated employee well-being and mental health as a top priority.&nbsp;</p> <p>Companies need to think about fostering employee connectedness, not only to boost engagement and performance, but as part of an ongoing commitment to employee mental health.&nbsp;</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/loneliness-connectedness-and-employee-engagement Tue, 11 Oct 2022 09:00:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Don’t Be a Dinosaur: Keep Remote & Hybrid-Remote Internships. https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/dont-be-dinosaur-keep-remote-hybrid-remote-internships <p>As we enter another fall, a time for new beginnings and reflection – the return to office conflict is top mind for both employer and employees. Some companies are embracing workplace flexibility, while others are demanding that employees and interns go back to the office resulting in office space occupancy rates being at their highest level (55%) since the pandemic started.</p> <p>Over the past two summers, over one-third (33%) of college students surveyed by <a href="https://bit.ly/3LPOYdd"><em>Inside Higher Ed and College Pulse</em></a>&nbsp;participated in a <strong>fully virtual or hybrid-remote internship</strong>, while 36% of respondents had traditional in-office internships. Overall, 60% of respondents were reporting on their recent summer 2022 experience. With the return to office movement, college student internships are also reverting to in-person, but before making the switch back to only in-office internships, we suggest that organizations ask a few key questions: <em>Why do we offer internships? Are we using interns to build a diverse talent pipeline? What skills do current students need to be ready for the future of work?</em></p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/dont-be-dinosaur-keep-remote-hybrid-remote-internships Mon, 26 Sep 2022 00:00:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Good Manager, Bad Manager. Which Are You? https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/good-manager-bad-manager-which-are-you <p>If you’ve spent any time in the working world, you’ve surely encountered managers of all stripes. Organizations entrust individuals to execute upon their managerial duties, but the results speak to varying degrees of success. Too frequently, employees are promoted to management positions based on tenure or excellence as an individual contributor, without regard to whether they have the skills and desire to be a manager. Too many organizations lack the infrastructure to provide training and support to employees who assume those roles. Too many people look the other way as bad managers cultivate a toxic culture that drives away talented employees, or worse, creates disengaged employees performing at much less than their best.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/good-manager-bad-manager-which-are-you Tue, 26 Apr 2022 18:35:28 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc How to Help Your Business Survive The Great Resignation https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/how-help-your-business-survive-great-resignation <p><strong>Employees are quitting their jobs at record rates.&nbsp;</strong></p> <p>The Turnover Tsunami. The Great Resignation Migration. The media and the monikers keep finding new ways to describe the phenomenon of workers quitting their jobs at record rates. As reported by <a href="https://www.forbes.com/sites/bryanrobinson/2021/06/11/the-great-resignation-migration-and-what-this-means-for-your-career/?sh=897b369aae69"><em>Forbes</em></a><em>,</em><em> </em>workforce analytics company Visier reports that resignation rates are at an all-time high, just as the job market is booming. "Trend data for 2021 shows that resignation rates have already begun to climb, signaling an even more pronounced increase this year than previous years."&nbsp;</p> <p>Visier goes on to report that mid-career workers ages 30-35 (21.5%), 35-40 (19.6%) and 40-45 (25.1%) and managers are jumping ship more than any other demographic "signaling that workers more established in their careers have continued to shift jobs." Technology and healthcare organizations have taken the biggest hit so far, with employees facing the biggest risk of burnout.</p> <p><strong>Why is this happening now?</strong></p> <p>With the increase of vaccinations, we have seen numerous companies that set the standard for the American workplace—like Apple, WeWork, and Goldman Sachs— requiring their employees to return to the office. But more and more employees are pushing back. Instead of returning to the office, employees are challenging mandates and, as the numbers show, are quitting their jobs in favor of more competitive and flexible opportunities at other companies. Or, they are launching new businesses and freelance careers.</p> <p><strong>The good news? Current chaos brings an incredible opportunity for growth.</strong></p> <p>The silver lining to the added pressures of COVID? Time to reflect and get clear on what it means to have both personal and professional quality of life.COVID taught many employees the importance of balance and clarity. As reported by <a href="https://www.cnbc.com/2021/02/10/half-of-us-workers-suffer-mental-health-issues-since-covid-19-hit.html">CNBC</a>, nearly "half of U.S. health workers have suffered mental health issues since COVID." Does this surprise anyone after the collective trash fire of 2020? No. But even so, there are those who have discovered that within the extreme adversity caused by COVID, there have been opportunities to change their lives for the better.</p> <p>As the adage goes, you can't get what you want unless you know what you want.&nbsp;All the stress, all the time at home, all the pressures of family and work demands forced many employees to get real, fast. Many decided that working at home with remote flexibility offers more flexibility and more quality time with their families than they had pre-pandemic. More time at home also gifted many with the time and space to reflect on their future, their goals, and whether their current roles supported or derailed that vision. The resilience born from navigating COVID has inspired more and more employees to explore other career paths as well as competitive opportunities with better benefits and salaries—opportunities they never had time to explore before.</p> <p><strong>Doing what we’ve always done will get us the same results.</strong></p> <p>It's easy to continue to do something, not because it's the most effective action, but because it's easier. It's what we've always done (have you ever heard the brilliant Aimee Mann song,<em> Momentum</em>?).<em> </em>For the sake of momentum, many organizations have continued to ask (and even demand) that employees do it the way it has always been done, stay in their lane, stay on the wake-up-go-to-office-go-home-go-to-bed path rather than risk the temporary pain of discomfort and growth.</p> <p><strong>Why are we still attached to the office?</strong></p> <p>It's how we have done it the past 100 years. We have built collective momentum, so much so that the idea of changing how it's always been done ignites resistance against that momentum, simply because changing workplace culture, changing where we work, triggers fear in the minds of many business owners and leaders. Employers fear that employees will not be as productive or motivated while working from home and that this will somehow translate into a loss of profit—even if studies have shown remote work can improve productivity. A study performed by Great Place to Work which surveyed over 800,000 employees from Fortune 500 companies, shows that "<a href="https://www.greatplacetowork.com/resources/blog/remote-work-productivity-study-finds-surprising-reality-2-year-study">most people reported stable or even increased productivity levels after employees started working from home" </a>(Hastwell and Kazi, February 10, 2021).</p> <p>Chaos, however, makes everything worse. When you add downturns in an economy, a national disaster, or a global pandemic, you have the perfect recipe for fear-induced doubt and a lack of trust.<a href="https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/if-i-cant-monitor-my-remote-employees-they-must-not-be-working"> During times of uncertainty, trust between employers and employees becomes even more critical.&nbsp;</a></p> <p><strong>Even so, the pandemic has invited employees to transform this adversity into an opportunity to regain control of our time and improve work-life integration.</strong>&nbsp;</p> <p>Remote work offers location independence. As we stated previously in our article <a href="https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/work-life-balance-vs-work-life-integration">Work-Life Balance vs. Work-Life Integration</a>," location independence is a way to make room for flexible work options and boost employee engagement; it allows for life integration."&nbsp;</p> <p>What does that look like? Employees can spend more time with their families. They can also support their health by using the additional flexibility to cook healthy meals and make time for exercise, rest, hobbies, and time with loved ones. <strong>From an organizational development perspective, supporting employees' wellbeing and respecting their desire for work-life integration is just a good business strategy. </strong>But these benefits only come with the kind of remote work environments that offer this flexibility and trust.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/how-help-your-business-survive-great-resignation Mon, 07 Feb 2022 00:00:00 -0500 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Performance Management for Remote Employees https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/performance-management-remote-employees <p>It remains to be seen what vestiges of lockdown life will remain in the United States, but it’s safe to say that offices will look different going forward. According to the 2020 OwlLabs State of Remote Work report, 80% of employees expect to work from home at least three times a week post-COVID-19, also known as a hybrid-remote work model. It’s a radical shift from the pre-pandemic norm of working five days a week, in person, in the office. While many employees are relieved to continue their now-ingrained work-from-home lifestyle, they do worry about the professional consequences of the choice. That OwlLabs report revealed that the percentage of respondents concerned that remote work will hinder their career development has risen from 23% in 2019 to 43% in 2020.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/performance-management-remote-employees Tue, 10 Aug 2021 08:30:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc If I Can’t Monitor My Remote Employees, They Must Not be Working https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/if-i-cant-monitor-my-remote-employees-they-must-not-be-working <p>Most of us probably don’t want to relive March 2020 – and the fear and uncertainty that accompanied the lockdowns at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic – ever again.&nbsp; So why does trust matter? When you don’t trust your employees, it’s easy to jump to the wrong conclusion about their behavior.&nbsp; But indulge me a moment, if you will.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/if-i-cant-monitor-my-remote-employees-they-must-not-be-working Mon, 17 May 2021 12:47:17 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Run It By Us First: Inclusion and Diversity as Strategic Advantages https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/run-it-by-us-first-inclusion-and-diversity-strategic-advantages <p>In the first article of our series <a href="https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/run-it-by-us-first-how-diversity-can-help-companies-avoid-major-blunders">#RunItByUsFirst: How Diversity Can Help Companies Avoid Major Blunders</a>, we talked about #RunItByUsFirst’s origin story and the embarrassing blunders companies made that could have been avoided if they had a diverse team review their content first. In this article, we will discuss the strategic advantages of Inclusion and Diversity.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/run-it-by-us-first-inclusion-and-diversity-strategic-advantages Mon, 07 Dec 2020 10:00:00 -0500 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Run It By Us First: How Diversity Can Help Companies Avoid Major Blunders https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/run-it-by-us-first-how-diversity-can-help-companies-avoid-major-blunders <p>Over the last decade, we have seen numerous companies scramble to release apologetic statements to their internal and external stakeholders over a culturally insensitive message or a blundered product release, most of which could have been avoided if they all did one thing: #RunItByUsFirst. In a series of blogs titled #RunItByUsFirst, I will explore the ideas behind inclusion and <a href="https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/run-it-by-us-first-inclusion-and-diversity-strategic-advantages">diversity as a strategic advantage,</a> creating a counseling culture by leading with empathy, and taking action through employee resource groups.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/run-it-by-us-first-how-diversity-can-help-companies-avoid-major-blunders Mon, 07 Dec 2020 06:30:00 -0500 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Why Culture Add? It’s all about Diversity. https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/why-culture-add-its-all-about-diversity <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Finding the right company fit for employees has started to have unintended connotations; at least, for some. There are those who want to hire people who are just like everyone else in the company. Sure, having people around who act alike, think alike, and come from a similar set of experiences provides a feel-good environment. But is this the best approach to innovation and decision-making? Nope.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/why-culture-add-its-all-about-diversity Sat, 19 Aug 2017 20:51:08 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Collapse in Atlanta…Ramp Up Telework https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/collapse-atlantaramp-telework <p>March 30, 2017, has officially been marked as the cause for a transportation crisis in Atlanta, Georgia. A massive fire on Interstate 85 caused a bridge to collapse.&nbsp;<a href="http://www.ajc.com/news/traffic/gdot-243-000-cars-day-pass-through-stretch-near-bridge-collapse/jU9qObnqRtuhApNpZLU82I/">Closing interstates</a>&nbsp;where more than 1.2 million people pass through weekly leads to&nbsp;<em>commuter chaos.</em>&nbsp;Major players like Coca-Cola, Home Depot, and State Farm are urging people to use public transportation or&nbsp;<a href="http://www.ajc.com/news/local/bridge-collapse-some-firms-let-employees-telecommute/17eBhfFFUPE6IYztckGfeO/">telecommute</a>&nbsp;as a result of the fire. City officials have estimated the connector will not be open again for at least ten weeks. It did not help matters when two weeks later there was a toxic chemical spill on the freeway&nbsp;<a href="http://abcnews.go.com/US/toxic-chemical-spill-closes-atlanta-freeway/story?id=46838786">shutting down a major highway in Atlanta</a>&nbsp;and on the other side of the city travelers on I-20 spotted a section of road start to buckle up into the air&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wsbtv.com/news/local/dekalb-county/part-of-i-20-buckling-lanes-blocked/513329735">shutting down all lanes of the interstate</a>. These unrelated bizarre events were unpredictable, but they happened and now everyone is trying to find the best way to deal with it.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/collapse-atlantaramp-telework Fri, 21 Apr 2017 08:30:00 -0400 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc How Important Is Fit? https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/how-important-fit <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Tina Fey once said, “Being a good boss means hiring talented people and then getting out of their way.” This is Management Rule #1. When you hire the right people who fit the culture of the company and their skills and knowledge fit the requirements necessary to perform the job, you should be able to get out of their way and let them work their magic. This is also a critical employee engagement tool. Autonomous work. People tend to be more attached to the job and thus more productive when they have independence over how their work is done in the organization. Empower them to “own” their work and they become fully engaged in the outcome.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/how-important-fit Fri, 10 Mar 2017 09:56:50 -0500 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Work Life Balance vs. Work Life Integration https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/work-life-balance-vs-work-life-integration <p>In my first Medium exposition titled&nbsp;<a href="https://medium.com/blendmeinc/life-integration-go-remote-f01c28a0607c">“Life Integration. Go Remote.”</a>&nbsp;I described the benefits for both the employee and employer for choosing a telework style of workplace. Location independence is a way to make room for flexible work options and boost employee engagement; it allows for life integration. From an organizational development perspective it is just plain good business strategy.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/work-life-balance-vs-work-life-integration Sun, 22 Jan 2017 10:09:07 -0500 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Is Remote Work the Answer to the Family Holiday Question? https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/remote-work-answer-family-holiday-question <p>This past Christmas my partner,&nbsp;our 3-year-old daughter and I, packed up the suitcases and headed to the Atlanta airport en route to visit Grammie Maine. If you hadn’t guessed it, our daughter named her grandmother who lives in Maine, Grammie Maine. Of course, the biggest questions for our little one were, how is Santa going to know where to leave her presents and will there be snow so she can make snow angels and bring Frosty the Snowman to life? This year she was pleasantly surprised to learn that Santa found her 1,156 miles from her house and there were piles of fluffy white stuff for snow angels and Frosty the Snowman.</p> <p>For her Maine native parents though, it is only a matter of time before their family and friends ask the question.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/remote-work-answer-family-holiday-question Tue, 17 Jan 2017 20:56:32 -0500 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc Life Integration. Go Remote. https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/life-integration-go-remote <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>When my husband and I were planning to start a family, thoughts of my career path instantly surfaced. Having grown up with two self-employed parents, I am no stranger to hard work. I witnessed firsthand the countless hours my mother would put into the job but also the flexibility she had to make time for us kids. She may have burned rubber to get there but she always made it to our piano lessons, basketball games, and dance recitals. One thing I knew for sure, I, too, wanted that flexibility.</p> https://www.blendmeinc.com/article/life-integration-go-remote Mon, 09 Jan 2017 17:10:40 -0500 Blend Me, Inc | Remote and Hybrid Work Knowledge Hub en Blend Me, Inc