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A new year brings with it the possibility for change and fresh starts.  In 2020, we certainly experienced an entire year of change!  “Normal” went away, replaced by the “new normal.” As vaccinations spread around the globe, many of us are hoping that the “new normal”  is really just a “temporary normal” and that we can return to our old lifestyles within the next year or two.

The reality, however, is that we are never going back to the “old normal.”  For all the horrors and discomforts that 2020 gave us, the work world also got a view of the “promised land:” a land where workers avoid the hassle of commuting; employees are more productive and have more flexibility in their schedules; consumers can receive whatever they need without leaving the comfort of their going to the store; and companies can reduce overhead costs.

For better or worse, businesses, especially those in the service and knowledge industries, are not likely to go back to the old ways any time soon.  To succeed in the newer, longer-term “new normal,” organizations need to build skills in five key areas of concern:

  1. Managing: How do you share knowledge, mentor newer team members, monitor progress, and achieve goals when people cannot interact in person?
  2. Building community: How do you encourage independent thinking and creativity while instilling a sense of purpose and connection to the team?
  3. Working together: How can teams brainstorm, collaborate, and produce deliverables when they are not a short walk from each other?
  4. Building skills: How do you train people, and not just talk at them, when you cannot bring them together in a classroom?
  5. Expanding your network: How do you develop new relationships and keep existing ones active when you cannot meet for lunches, coffee, or cocktails?

While 2020 saw most organizations start to pivot their methods to address these issues, many organizations are still searching for answers.  Comprehensive Learning Solutions has been working remotely for 11 years and has already encountered many of the issues that other organizations started facing this year. Throughout the next few months, we will share on this blog some of our favorite tips and tools for virtual working.

If you want to upgrade your employees’ or clients’ skills in these or other Human Resource Management-related areas, contact Comprehensive Learning Solutions to see how we can help.

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