If you're an introvert, there's a good chance you've loved working remotely during the previous year or more, thanks to less social interaction and more options for autonomy. On the contrary, if you're an extrovert, you might have discovered that being at home makes you less productive and unpleasant because you cannot replicate the external stimuli you experienced at work.
What transpires after that in a hybrid version? How do you guarantee that everyone in your group stays interested, effective, and satisfied when many introverts want to work remotely while extroverts are much more prone to wish to return to the office?
We discuss three methods to guide managers in handling introverts and extroverts thru the change to hybrid effectively.
Allow introverts some privacy and time
It's crucial to prevent the introverts in your team from being overshadowed, especially during team meetings, if some of your staff are currently working from the office and some from home. Introverts may not attempt to speak again if outgoing people repeatedly cut them off. If this occurs regularly, especially when working remotely, they may lose interest in the situation or feel excluded. It is easy to overlook the virtual callers and forget to involve them in the dialogue during hybrid meetings.
Making sure that everyone is heard is your responsibility as the manager. Practice holding off on speaking for five to ten seconds using tools like a conversation bar or a hand-raising feature to indicate who has the floor. Sending questions in advance gives everyone more time to prepare and can be helpful. Encourage attendees to email their ideas after the meeting or use collaborative software where everyone may contribute directly. Having the option to interact synchronously allows introverts who might be particularly hesitant to speak out in the presence of a bigger group to participate.
Give extroverted people a voice
Set up frequent in-person or video meetings with your extroverts if you notice they are having trouble connecting, so they may discuss their issues directly. Additionally, you can promote breakout groups on Zoom or Slack to allow them to express their thoughts without taking over a team meeting.
Encourage the restoration of "watercooler moments" for extroverts who have returned to the workplace. According to research, respondents most missed these social, relationship-building activities when they switched to remote work. They support extroverts in finding unplanned opportunities for social interaction throughout the day, keep management informed of the actual state of the business, and foster a sense of teamwork, morale, and trust among the team members.
It's crucial to recognize that not every extrovert will be going back to work. Organize additional optional hybrid team-building activities, such as online lunch chats and hybrid meeting happy hours, to prevent leaving those staying at home out of social activities. Team members can gather for a 15–30 minute meal to share, whether they are present in person or online during hybrid lunches, which have emerged as the new social cafeteria.
Encourage a variety of communication styles
Managers have a responsibility to build a cohesive team. However, this does not imply that everyone must communicate in the same manner; rather, it entails making room for various forms of communication so that everyone can speak in their unique voice.
Regardless of where each member of your team stands on the extroversion-introversion scale, the increase in remote workers in recent years made it necessary for us all to become used to radical changes. We've all sacrificed to compensate for the distance, and the experience has taught us a lot. In the long run, when some of us go back to the office, and others continue working remotely, these lessons will strengthen us and make us more diverse.