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I’ve been checking in with our regional directors and having conversations with member firms, and there’s no doubt that return to office and hybrid work are top of mind for most firms. Over the past year we’ve seen firsthand that managing an in-office team can be quite different from managing a team that works from home, the office, and other locations.

The Future Is Hybrid

In all of my presentations for 2021, I’ve referenced a McKinsey Study on the future of remote work. Here are some of the highlights that stood out to me:

  • 49% of respondents were feeling at least somewhat burned out
  • Pre-COVID, 62% of respondents preferred on-site work, but post-COVID that was down to 37%
  • Around 30% of respondents stated they’d be likely to switch jobs if a return to fully on-site work was required

While this study wasn’t specific to accounting firms, I’d say it still very well applies, as there’s little of our work that must be done 100% in an office. In fact, PWC recently announced that it’s letting ALL of its 40,000+ US employees choose remote work. Globally, that will add pressure to other PWC offices to follow suit. There will be added pressure for firms in the US to follow, and then the trickle down becomes real.

Mapping a Flexible Future

Some of our member firms are already creating strong hybrid environments. BPM LLP, for example, has office managing partners and a virtual office managing partner. When BPM decided to offer remote work to everyone, they appointed appropriate leadership just like they would for another location.

But if you haven’t established an environment to allow for hybrid, remote, or flex, where do you begin? If you’re an Allinial Global member firm, you’ll be glad to know that we’ve partnered with ConvergenceCoaching, LLC to create a Guide to Managing a Remote or Blended Workforce. This guide provides actionable insights to help our member firms create the right kind of environment to thrive in this new era.

Here is a chapter list to highlight the areas of concentration:

  1. Remote or Blended Work Is Here to Stay
  2. Making a Cultural Commitment to a Blended Workforce
  3. Maintaining Your Culture and Relationships
  4. Clarifying Expectations
  5. Leveraging Technology
  6. Hiring and Onboarding Remote Team Members
  7. How Far Can Remote Team Members Progress Their Career & Conclusion
  8. Action List for Implementation

Ongoing Support for a “One Size Fits One” Culture

One thing is for sure—this isn’t about mandating days in the office vs. days at home or elsewhere. It’s about creating a “one size fits one” culture that allows for flexibility as needed. To do that you’ll need to establish the right culture and guidelines.

We want to help all Allinial Global member firms implement the strategy and systems they need to thrive into the future, which is why we’ve established a strategic partnership with ConvergenceCoaching. In addition to providing the guide and related resources, the Convergence team will be joining us at Summit next month and providing various webinars throughout the year to assist Allinial Global members with implementation.

We’re excited about what the future will bring and hope you’ll visit the AG member website today to download your copy of the guide. If you need assistance accessing these tools, please email Jessica Cormier, our VP of Talent Development, who will be happy to help. 

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