Improving Communication—and Culture—From a Distance
Remote work calls for a more sophisticated approach to communication
There's a familiar line in the business world that says culture is "the way we do things around here." Reading a couple of recent studies around leadership in the pandemic era, I think that line ought to be more specific: Culture is be the way we communicate how we do things around here.
In a remote or hybrid environment, the risks of being misunderstood or wrongly coordinated intensify. Zoom calls and email flatten everything to pixels, making it more difficult to discern what’s a high priority or not. That’s a point that’s made in State of Association Workplaces Post-Pandemic Survey, released last week by Achurch Consulting and Association Trends. Based on the responses of 354 association leaders and decision-makers surveyed last May, the study found that many associations are still uncomfortable when it comes to transitioning from in-person work.
One piece of evidence of that is the survey’s finding that 70 percent of respondents say they’re concerned that there are now “fewer opportunities for organic communication and relationships.” Similarly, 62 percent cited concerns about a “change in workplace culture/morale.”
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