First published on COMUNiTI, October 2023
Many organisations continue to question their position on hybrid work. And it’s understandable, given that it’s such a multifaceted challenge.
On one hand, leaders are thinking about what’s best for the business:
Are people productive when they work at home?
What does hybrid work mean for our investment in office space?
If people don’t work from the office full-time, should they still ‘own’ a desk?
And on the other hand, they’re considering what’s best for employees:
If we introduce a ‘number of in-office days’ policy, does it erode trust and trigger turnover?
How do we balance the need for individual flexibility and team connection?
What impact is hybrid work having on culture?
As they ponder these questions and more, they often ask COMUNiTI for our insights. And while...
Here are two trends that I’m observing, and they are consuming many workplace strategy conversations right now, particularly as organisations are acutely focused on managing psychosocial risks.
Meetings are continuing to happen on Teams or Zoom, despite the fact that all the people who need to be at the meeting are in the same office. That’s right! People are logging onto digital platforms with their noise-canceling headphones to collaborate when they might be sitting just a couple of seats or rows away from each other.
Why it’s happening
When I dig into this dynamic, teams tell me that it’s driven by two key things:
Firstly, office noise....
In 2022, my word was ‘spaciousness’.
And with good reason! I was a pregnant Mum of two, getting ready to welcome child number four into our blended family, and I was also at the helm of a growing business with a fully booked schedule and a small team.
I couldn’t have been happier and more grateful. But I also felt like I couldn’t breathe from the pressure (and probably from a growing baby pressing against my ribs!).
I needed to create space — space to take maternity leave and be present in my baby bubble in those very precious early weeks, and space for my team to step up and continue delivering client projects and growing the business… or so I thought.
Here are my lessons and top tips for planning to take maternity leave or an extended break from...
I’m not sure if it was Professor Scott Galloway who said it first, but he says it well when he talks about entrepreneurship and the future of work: “greatness is achieved in the agency of others”.
If you’ve started a company, scaled a business, or been a team leader, you’ll appreciate that at times it can be a lonely place, where waves of imposter syndrome leave you second-guessing everything! Buoyed by the thrill of chasing a big vision or goal, you push on.
Thankfully, my intuition led me to find like-minded entrepreneurial spirits early in COMUNiTI’s 10 year journey, and their mentorship, guidance, and support has been invaluable.
COMUNiTI’s success has been a shared endeavour. I find that everything is better and a lot more fun when I collaborate, solve problems, exchange hair-brained ideas, and learn with others.
So, as COMUNiTI celebrates 10 years, I also want to recognise the influence and impact of my ‘agency of...
Whilst I didn’t realise it at the time, when I started COMUNiTI, [MARSDEN Collective back in those days] this was the beginnings of a new philosophy to work. I was championing the evolution of organisations prioritising employee engagement and wellbeing.
I fundamentally believed [and still do!] that work can and should be an experience that people love. The way I see it, humans intrinsically enjoy the construct of work — creating things, connecting with others to solve problems, and making a meaningful contribution to the world. But all too often the places where people would go to ‘do work’ were soulless boxes filled with rows of smaller boxes that ‘accommodated’ people from 9 to 5, Monday to Friday.
As a commercial designer, I could see the untapped potential for businesses and their people. For me, creating a workplace is about so much more...
WOW! I can’t tell you how wonderful it is to be back in a room filled with such passionate, kind and enlightened people working to do good in their organisations.
I’ve been in Sydney this past week at the annual Thriving Workplace event hosted by Sophie & Claire from The Serenity Collective.
In true heartfelt connection to the people in the room and the ground that we stood upon, we were warmly welcomed with a beautiful traditional ochre ceremony, by Susan Moylan-Coombs. This ceremony invited us to;
Purpose-driven organisations are understanding the power their workplace has in communicating their intentions and impact, creating thriving workplaces. The ability to communicate this purpose lies within the organisation’s existing business intelligence; its values and strategy. This intelligence, forms the foundations for the functional planning and aesthetics of the workplace, influencing the behaviours that instill this greater purpose.
Organisational values can be much more than the words that get stuck up on the wall. Typically, these values are informed by the brand story of the business and show up through the behaviours of its people. A brand story is not just the logo and the suite of colours, it’s the narrative that illustrates the history of the business, where they came from, who they are, what they do and what...
In January of this year, I shared my process for setting my year up for success, a workshop called Live a Life by Design; centred around finding your purpose, creating a vision of the life that is authentic to you and setting the goals to make it happen.
It was such a beautiful workshop, and l loved sharing how I lay the foundation to living the life of my dreams, every year. The feedback I received was amazing and participants immediately saw a shift in themselves.
One of the gorgeous women who did my program, Nik, decided that her life wasn’t ticking all the boxes she desired. Her work and personal life were going fabulously, however on reflection it wasn’t quite measuring up in the area of personal fulfilment; hobbies and joy. Deciding it...
Design creates culture. Culture shapes values. Values determine the future.
Robert L Peters.
Purpose-driven organisations are understanding the power their workplace has in communicating their intentions and impact, creating thriving workplaces. The ability to communicate this purpose lies within the organisation’s existing business intelligence; its values and strategy. This intelligence, forms the foundations for the functional planning and aesthetics of the workplace, influencing the behaviours that instil this greater purpose.
Organisational values can be much more than the words that get stuck up on the wall. Typically, these values are informed by the brand story of the business and show up through the behaviours of its people. A brand story is not just the logo and the suite of colours, it’s the narrative that illustrates the history of the business, where they came from, who they are, what they do and what they stand...
Employee Experience… what is it?
It could be defined as the difference between attracting and retaining talent, the rewards associated with performance and the perceptions of the employee about the organisation, influencing loyalty and the ability to fulfil an employees potential.
Gallup define it as “the journey an employee takes in your organisation”.
Or… it could simply be put, that when you have a positive experience, people LOVE coming to work. And… What if everyone LOVED going to work, and they could find their place at work where they felt at home?
Employee Experience lies at the intersection of the physical workplace, the organisational culture and the virtual environment; the technology that makes it all possible.
Once thought to be the only consideration in creating a solid employee experience, the definition of culture and what it means to have a great one, we believe, has evolved beyond simply being the general...