As states continue to open up, more and more employees are returning to in-person work. While everyone knows the basic, everyday expectations of an office, it’s essential to think beyond simply getting to the workplace on time.
Returning to in-person work means:
- Having in-person meetings and collaborations.
- Reorganizing your in-office workspace to fit your needs.
- Adjusting to any “new normal” rules like wearing a mask or sanitizing a workstation.
- Still providing video-conferencing options to clients.
- Remembering that clients may be in a different place than you when it comes to in-person work.
This is all on top of the usual expectations like showing up on time, wearing professional clothing, and maintaining a professional demeanor when in the office.
To-Dos for Returning to the Office
At Business Success Consulting Group, we use processes and systems to help businesses scale and grow. You can utilize the same strategy for your return to in-person work.
Here is an overview of to-dos that will help you pick up where you left off when it comes to in-person work.
1. Set up your desk.
Your workspace has evolved with you in the past year. Take some time to look at your remote office setup. What makes it comfortable? What “to-dos” do you need to perform in the office to replicate or streamline your office to make the transition easier and more comfortable?
Set up a procedure that will help you create a better in-office workspace. A procedure provides a step-by-step layout of the actions you need to take. While most people think of this as a written list of instructions, you can format a procedure to fit your needs. You could make a series of screenshots and snapshots with brief instructions attached to each, a list of to-dos on a voice memo, or a video walkthrough that you can use once in the office.
2. Review any new rules or instructions before you go into the office.
Prepare for in-office work by studying the rules, instructions, and safety protocols now in place before you enter the workplace. Then, find ways to follow these protocols while ensuring your comfort.
For example, if you are required to wear a mask at work, be sure to find the most comfortable fit for your face before you have to go in. Additionally, think through the personal protocols you have been taking to keep yourself safe and decide how you can ensure your own comfort and safety when in the office.
3. Talk about protocols around in-person meetings.
Even if you are going back to in-person work, jumping back to in-person meetings can feel daunting. If you weren’t satisfied with your meeting format before 2020, this might be the perfect time to shake things up.
Talk to your team about changing the meeting format and protocols. For example, you can try:
- Walking meetings
- Gamified meetings
- Rapid-fire or Pecha Kucha sessions
- Self-steering meetings
- Hybrid meetings that include in-person and remote
You can also discuss protocols around when meetings are necessary. You and your team have likely found several workarounds that help you discover solutions without having a meeting in the past year.
Work with your team to create processes and procedures around meetings to make them more productive, creative, and valuable for all involved.
4. Continue offering remote options
Even if your office is returning to in-person work, others around the country and the world may not. This means it is vital to continue to offer remote options to clients and employees working around the world.
There are two excellent ways to determine which options you should continue offering.
The first is performing a survey on customers and employees. Find out which remote options they prefer and determine which offering will fit this need best.
The second is to determine which options have benefited your business most. Perhaps remote “meet-ups” with clients have provided more opportunity for connection – and been more efficient than in-person chats. Maybe offering remote services has helped clients understand your work’s value – and given you more opportunities to educate others.
Pick the options that have worked best for you and your business – and then drop offerings that haven’t been as successful.
A Note on Maintaining a Remote Office Space
Returning to in-person work doesn’t mean that you will never work from home again. Many companies are adopting a hybrid model that allows more employees to remotely more often. That means that not only do you need to set up your workspace in the office, but you also should keep your remote office space comfortable and functional.
Documenting your home office space in step one above will help you to keep your remote space cohesive. So, be sure to hang onto any processes and procedures that you created to set up your in-office workspace – just in case you need to run through the same procedures at home.
Are you ready to organize your business? Contact the process experts at Business Success Consulting Group today!