With the fast-paced implementation of technology and evolving work expectations, understanding the needs of your employees has never been more critical.

Globally, the work environment is changing rapidly.

With the fast-paced implementation of technology and evolving work expectations, understanding the needs of your employees has never been more critical.

Over the past five years, searches for workplace well-being have doubled, with the growing need to create workspaces driven by purpose.

Deloitte’s Future of Work examines improving culture and employee experience in the top-five transformational tactics for workplaces, alongside building connected teams, personal development, and design-thinking.

So what is the culture in today’s changing environment, and how is it measured?

Frei and Morriss give a great example of what culture is in a practical sense:

“Employees make hundreds of decisions on their own every day, and culture is our guide. Culture tells us what to do when the CEO isn’t in the room, which is, of course, most of the time.”

It goes back to purpose and finding a greater understanding of the “why” of everyday work.

In a team environment, culture often shapes the ways we communicate.

Create shared workspaces

We’ve all heard of flexible and remote working as an option for our team, but what does this look like practically?

PwC says, by 2030, the majority of the world’s workforce is expected to find flexibility, autonomy, and fulfilment in their job. Business leaders can make this a reality by creating spaces online where employees can have full access to resources and channels of communication they’d otherwise have in the office environment.

Also Read: How to deal with the challenges of a distributed team

This goes beyond emails and should be tailored to both the job role and industry. For example, if you are working in a design firm, you need access to a suite of tools, templates, etc. Often these resources need to be cloud-based to allow instant access via a simple security log-in.

Offer anonymous feedback

If you are trying to create a culture of honesty and trust where teams are eager to give each other feedback, you may want to consider encouraging company-wide feedback.

Doing this online is an effective method to streamline the process and offer a safe space for honesty. By incorporating a feedback form into a familiar setting—such as a collaboration tool, email system—you can formalise the process.

Also Read: Why team-building exercises won’t make your staff more productive

Let your employees know that the business is looking to improve continuously. Remaining anonymous can make feedback easier for people, and when the feedback loop is hosted digitally, you remove all barriers to honesty.

Implement democratic decision-making

Historically, decisions are often made from top to bottom, with little input from team members. Online polling tools offer a channel for staff engagement. The key here is to ask questions you want answers to. If you engage your team for the polls and don’t release the outcome, it can have quite the opposite effect creating a hostile and untrustworthy environment.

Also Read: 6 tips for building a successful software development team

Questions don’t need to be to make critical strategic decisions, instead pick topics that will put a smile on your team’s face. Ask for opinions, for instance, on new office spaces, themes for next month’s team workshop, etc.

Incorporating the polling process on an ongoing basis will improve your team’s connection, and in turn, creates a happier and more engaged workforce.

Don’t plan your digital strategy online; instead, take it offline. Challenge leadership to decide how you want your employees to perceive the company. Invite team members to the table. Finalise goals.

Digital tools are used to promote collaboration, engagement, and transparency; ultimately improving employee happiness.

When used effectively, digital tools can create unique moments online and engages each employee directly with the company’s vision.

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Image Credit: Marvin Meyer