By Shalini Ramakrishnan, Director of Product Marketing

The threat because of which we retreated in haste, from office buildings to kitchen tables or home offices, at the onset of the pandemic, seems to be abating. Today people are gearing to return to work as the pandemic comes under control. However, the reactive stance that businesses assumed at the onset of the pandemic, no longer remains a valid strategy to design the hybrid workplace. 

As the world of work moves towards a hybrid avatar, seamlessly amalgamating work from home with on-premises, organizations are moving to create transformational strategies to ensure business success in the future. The future of work is now centered on how you work. Not where you do it from.

The hybrid workplace needs a transformational strategy – one that is intentional and purpose-driven. This strategy will remain incomplete if enterprises do not account for the impact of this world of work on diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives. 

The extraordinary circumstances caused by the pandemic threw greater light on the racial and societal inequities in our society. While enterprises were hiring and were greatly focused on diversity, the move to the hybrid workplace has shifted priorities. 

A recently concluded report on workplace culture and inclusion shows that 

  • Only 53% of employees rate their workplace diversity, equity, and inclusiveness culture as healthy. 
  • 58% feel that their organizations still have undefined diversity and inclusion goals. 
  • More than 67% feel that their organizational leaders need to do more to drive diversity, equity, and inclusion across the organization.

Diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives are playing a big role in enterprise transformation. A report from McKinsey highlights how diverse and more inclusive organizations are more profitable than those that are not. While diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives are good for business, the time to do more than just pay lip service to these initiatives is now. 

Why Diversity, Equity and Inclusion matter even more now

COVID-19 gave organizations a chance to evaluate and reconsider what workplaces should look like. Ushering in the Future of Work and driving the focus to build a hybrid workplace demands a technological transformation to ease the logistical nightmare. But the hybrid workplace also shows the promise of being a cultural facilitator. This is because the work environment becomes more boundary-less while bringing in geographically distant workers closer. 

Thus, to access a greater talent market and to support geographically dispersed teams, bringing strategic focus on designing relevant diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives becomes paramount. 

From Technological Hybridity to Cultural Hybridity

In the hybrid workplace, employing technological hybridity will be commonplace. New platforms, tools, and technologies will drive better workflows and processes. And just like this technological hybridity, it also demands a more intentional move to enable the coexistence of multiple individual identities. This becomes especially relevant in today’s context where employees desire a greater alignment of individual identities and the value system of the organization.

Organizations need to work intentionally towards creating an environment that fosters and encourages inclusion, and diversity and promotes equity. 

Leveling the playing field is essential

At present, most organizations are focused on managing the day-to-day challenges of managing remote and in-person teams. However, along with this, they must now focus on creating a playing field that is even and fair to all. And we cannot create an even playing field unless we address the unconscious biases that may be at work dividing in-person and remote employees and those coming from marginalized and underserved communities. 

Accounting for the need of all employees is mandatory

Diversity, inclusion, and equity are the key components that ensure that organizations function better and innovate faster. As the workplace becomes hybrid and relies more on technology, organizations need to reskill and adapt to the demands of digital transformation to help employees manage the climate of change. This reskilling and upskilling extend to power skills that drive collaboration and innovation while accounting for the needs of ‘all’ employees. 

Undoing unconscious bias is imperative for engagement 

The hybrid workplace will need to focus heavily on undoing unconscious biases and work towards becoming more inclusive to drive transformational organizational outcomes. A focused effort into diversity and inclusion unlocks new opportunities to accelerate reskilling and simultaneously nurturing a mindset of continuous learning. 

By becoming more intentional about their diversity, inclusion, and equity strategy, organizations ensure that they level the playing field and allow all employees equal opportunities. These moves drive better employee engagement as employees feel that the organization is invested in their growth. This also strengthens the organization’s ability to manage change and foster growth. With time, the organization becomes more inclusive and diverse. 

How Peer Coaching Can Help

Just like how technology is driving the workplace, technology can drive diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives as well. Moving towards a culture focused on continuous learning leveraging peer coaching can be a strategic starting point for the same. After all, with knowledge comes power. 

Peer coaching is an effective medium to change unconscious bias. That is because bias can only be removed by virtue of continuous and contextual interactions to drive behavioral change. Employing a technology-powered peer coaching platform can help employees identify their growth needs and address challenges that impede professional progress. 

The opportunity to access coaches to drive growth makes sure that the people in the D&I umbrella are not struggling to identify growth pathways, can easily navigate the organizational network, and build trust bridges across the organization.

The rules of engagement have to evolve in a hybrid workplace. We can no longer afford to take a cut-and-paste approach to important initiatives such as diversity, inclusion, and equity. Those organizations who take data-backed and technology-powered approaches for their initiatives will be more successful in their efforts simply because their efforts will be more structured, organized, contextual, and relevant to the workforce. 

Connect with us to see how we can supercharge your diversity, inclusion, and equity initiatives with our AI-powered coaching platform. 

By Madhukar Govindaraju, Founder & CEO

The future of work is hybrid, and it is now. 

As we move steadfastly into the hybrid work model, it becomes abundantly clear that this world of work will need new skills and approaches. In the post-pandemic world, organizations will have to re-evaluate the drivers of employee engagement and employee experience since the older drivers of engagement no longer remain valid. 

With the economy ahead promising to be unquestionably different, organizations have to now focus on upskilling initiatives to thrive in this new world order. New skills, processes, working mechanisms, systems of collaboration, team building, and new ways of thinking are the need of the hour. These cannot be addressed with a day-long training program. Developing these new skills to thrive in today’s complex work environment needs focused and continuous learning. Something that organizations can achieve with peer coaching. 

Read: Peer Coaching – The Critical Pillar to Drive Employee Experience and Engagement in Hybrid Workplaces

But how can organizations create a peer coaching culture?

Develop an army of peer coaches

To create a peer coaching culture an organization needs peer coaches. Looking at the employee base and identifying the natural coaches in their midst is the first step. However, often people themselves are unaware of their coaching capabilities. Helping people identify their inherent coaching capabilities assists in identifying peer coaches who can contribute to the organizational learning environment. 

Apart from the ones who are naturally disposed to coaching, organizations can also look at high-performing employees or those employees who show exceptional technical or power skills and coach them to become peer coaches. 

Managers can identify the potential coaches in their teams according to their skills and make them a part of the peer coaching network. Managers themselves can embark on a learning journey and take coaching to become good peer coaches. 

Read: Help your Leaders Transition to a Digital World – Start Peer Coaching Initiatives

Destigmatize asking for help

It is heartening to see that organizations are now paying close attention to their employee’s mental health. With the pandemic pushing employees towards burnout, the conversation around mental health and seeking help to alleviate stressors has become mainstream.

Seeking help has been stigmatized as a sign of weakness for the longest time and it is time to change that.

There are many who are still not sensitized to the unique challenges of their peers. Setting up a peer coaching culture helps in beating stigmas and creates a healthy work environment by educating people on the importance of mental health and the adverse impacts of poor mental health and burnout. Actively identifying toxic behaviors and addressing them, sends out a strong message, that only healthy habits that are conducive to the workplace shall be encouraged. 

Peer coaching helps people become more self-aware by providing contextual information. Since it is a continuous and non-judgmental process, people are more open to receiving feedback. The continuous nature of the program also makes sure that people can circle back to their coaches when they find themselves falling into unhealthy work patterns or ideologies. Proactive support provided by peer coaching makes sure that the behavioral change needed to destigmatize aging concepts is implemented and internalized. 

Promote continuous learning

To develop a peer coaching culture, organizations have to work towards developing a culture that promotes continuous learning. This ties in with the need of the times, where changing business dynamics, a rapidly evolving technology landscape, and the increasing focus on digital transformation demand new skill sets. What is clear is that the pace of change we are experiencing is only going to accelerate in the post-pandemic world. 

The needs of the hybrid workplace also demand the learning of new power skills and the unlearning of certain old methodologies. Organizations that offer avenues to improve their employee’s skill sets by helping them identify their learning needs using contextual data are more likely to see an invested, engaged, and productive workforce. 

Encouraging continuous learning also drives a peer coaching culture as then the workforce is motivated to lean in towards their coaches to seek guidance on how to best navigate their work environments and ensure that they can remain on a growth path. 

Lead by example

Peer coaching can play a big role in helping leaders develop and evolve their leadership styles to suit the hybrid work environment. Managers now have to evolve and become virtual leaders from remote bosses. It is time for organizational leaders to lead by example and leverage peer coaching and become peer coaches themselves to navigate the challenges of this hybrid workplace.

When employees see people of authority encouraging, seeking, and participating in peer coaching, it also prompts them to follow their example. The goal of peer coaching is to help each other find solutions and unlock an individual’s potential to maximize their performance. When employees across the organization see seniors taking the right steps to enhance their performance and learn new behaviors and skills to thrive in the hybrid workplace, they are also motivated to follow the same. The legitimacy that peer coaching gets from leadership involvement helps in establishing a strong peer coaching culture within the organization. 

In Conclusion

With no playbook telling us how to manage these challenging and inexperienced times, developing a peer coaching culture becomes imperative as we go back to work. The workforce today needs understanding, empathy, and support more than ever before to forge ahead in their career paths. Establishing a peer coaching culture in these times gives employees the support that they need to validate and activate knowledge, reduce work-related stressors, identify growth paths and avenues of improvement, and increase engagement. All of these factors contribute towards a healthy and resilient workforce- one that is completely ready to manage the upheavals and uncertainties that the future holds. 

Connect with us to see how our AI-powered coaching platform can help you deliver a robust and thriving coaching culture across your organization. 

By Madhukar Govindaraju , Founder & CEO

Organizations invest a lot in their employee engagement to keep them happy and productive at work. Adopting some of the fanciest technology solutions, setting up offices in hip locations, providing handsome perks, and lavish annual get-togethers…the list is veritably endless. 

While these elements have been lucrative draws, all or at least most, of these initiatives have been of no impact over the last year. What good was that fancy campus with no one to inhabit it? What good is that office cafeteria or game room when no one comes to it? 

The technology, yes, that has been an investment that has come of use in this age that we dwell in. Technology helped us stay connected, collaborative, efficient, and productive. As we leave 2020 behind us, we take with us great learning from it – that the world of work has changed in indelible ways, and it is time for organizations to re-evaluate what matters to their workforce.

Coaching – the best new year’s gift

2020 was the year of the unexpected…a year that compelled organizations to completely rethink and rework their business to adapt it to a global pandemic. While the embers of this disruption seem to settle a little, it is clear that disruption is going to be a trend in our lives for the foreseeable future. 

A painful lesson that the past year taught us was that even the best-laid plans can bite the dust and that the future might not unfold as we predict or want it to. 

Building organizational resilience becomes critical in this world of constant disruption, especially because the rules of engagement, of how you control and manage things and people, have changed.

When disruption reigns supreme, organizations need a new approach to do things, especially where people are concerned. In such uncertain and unpredictable times, a good people management model is not based on pre-existing guidelines or principles of accountability or even the driving cultural norms. 

It, instead, rests with coaching.

Coaching, in essence, is designed to accelerate the adoption of new competencies. 

The new world order, or should we call it chaos, demands a new approach. That apart, here are a few compelling reasons why employees need the gift of coaching now, more than ever.

The New Rules of Productivity and Collaboration

Organizations have to look at avenues to drive and cultivate collaboration given the new distributed and remote world of work. 

With no physical interaction and dynamics at play, employees need new tools to hone their critical skills that enable collaboration – critical thinking, communication, strategic thinking, ownership, accountability, empathy, and the like become essential skills for productivity and collaboration.

Sticking to yesterday’s playbook to drive collaboration is not going to work today. As the rules of the game change, employees need constant guidance and proactive feedback based on data-backed insights into their critical skills. With contextual, timely, and relevant guidance, they can ably navigate this complex world-of-work, where collaboration boosts innovation.

The added advantage of coaching is that employees can ask for help, address queries, get feedback, and determine solutions without fear or judgment.

Rise of the Gig Economy

The ‘gig economy’ has been on an incremental rise for some time now. 2020, perhaps gave it the push that it needed to transform into a serious trend that organizations across the world are accepting and using. The need for specialized and niche skills such as new-age digital skills are on an upswing. This is especially true as the world is more software-defined and remote working and distributed work environments are the new normal. These influencers have further legitimized the gig economy and accelerated its adoption.

Research shows that 81% of companies have used gig workers. 29.7% of the organizations used gig workers for project-based work. 24.4% hired freelance workers or independent contractors for work that did not need 8-hour work shifts and 26.5% employed them as substitutes to absent full-time workers. 

While the employment status of these gig workers remains challenged, organizations are often found wondering if these workers should be a part of their coaching plan or not? An E&Y study revealed that “52% of contingent workers don’t receive training from their employer”.

This gig economy trend is going to continue on its upward trajectory especially as the need for niche skills grows incrementally. And while organizations have to work out whether they treat these workers as ‘employees’ or ‘external resources’, taking into account their learning and growth needs and enabling them with the right coach will lead to engaged and well-utilized gig workers.

From Employee Engagement to Enablement

What’s the buzzword for 2021? EMPOWERMENT!!

  • Organizations now have to focus on creating individual and group behavioral transformation to drive business outcomes. 
  • Employees need coaching to scale performance blockers, remain engaged, and self-motivated. They need to build their future skills or upskill themselves to meet the business needs. 
  • New managers need empowerment with the right set of skills to manage this remote workforce. 
  • Old-time managers need to reset their beliefs and adopt new tools and strategies to manage the new dynamics of the workforce. 
  • Leadership training also has to change to help leaders adapt and drive positive organizational outcomes in an extremely challenging business environment. 

There is a lot of work at hand, clearly!

The cue to alleviate all these challenges and navigate them lies with coaching. Given its continuous nature, coaching effectively helps in bringing about the behavioral change needed to become more adaptable and agile. It also provides employees the right support and direction to enhance their performance by addressing the hurdles they face. Coaching enables the workforce by providing guided direction which brings clarity to thought and thereby drives enablement.   

Transform Change Management 

New ways of working and new types of interactions became normal in 2020. 

Managers were challenged to maintain the motivation and employee engagement levels of their team members and avoid Work from Home burnout. Leadership styles have had to adapt to meet the requirements of this new world order. Performance management and employee experience have reached an inflection point and are ushering in the age of HR 3.0.  

Coaching emerges as a central theme to help organizations, managers, leaders, and employees become more responsible and agile towards change. Leveraging contextual coaching organizations can enable better change management and help employees remain motivated and engaged. They can help managers become better coaches and drive leaders to become more empathetic without sacrificing innovation.

The new decade dawns amidst challenges and struggles. As such, organizations have to go back to the drawing board and evaluate how to improve the processes and workflows and fine-tune them to meet the needs of this new year. At the same time, they have to understand and identify new ways to take their team to victory. 

This journey becomes far more outcome-driven and productive with an effective coach on their side… guiding, teaching, and helping employees, managers and leaders navigate the challenges they face by providing frequent, contextual, and timely feedback. It also helps employees feel more connected to the workplace as coaching looks at employees as whole ‘people’ and not as drones carrying on everyday tasks mechanically with little thought. 

Coaching considers an individual’s inner game and helps them overcome all habits of the mind that inhibit performance. It creates strong bonds and connections that bring behavioral change that drive performance. 

It, hence, becomes an incredibly powerful tool to motivate and engage the millennial worker, the rising and the most dominant generation in our workforce presently.

Connect with us to understand how to create a robust internal coaching culture leveraging a powerful, AI-enabled coaching platform. Give your employee engagement and learning and development initiatives the jumpstart they need to sail through 2021.

By Madhukar Govindaraju , Founder & CEO

2020 has been a crash course on how to rethink everything. 

From the way we work to the way we collaborate; this year has seen a complete overhaul of everything familiar. 

For frontline workers, such as people who are in sales, this shift has been tougher to navigate. They had to unlearn the old methods of working and learn new strategies – this year has been really challenging on multiple levels. For organizations, the challenge has been to retain high engagement levels of these sales teams as they move into the new normal of digital selling. 

So, what can organizations do to drive employee engagement for their remote sales teams?

Cross the ‘process’ chasm

Processes are one of the most important things to implement to help a remote sales team. Processes bring structure and direction and help to get work done, especially when teams are spread across geographies or time zones. 

Defining processes on lead generation, doing demos and presentations online, conducting negotiations and closing deals, and enabling customer success are important parameters to help remote sales teams do their work successfully. 

However, along with defining processes, it is also important for sales teams to follow these processes. 

Sales managers need to coach their teams to adhere to processes and build accountability to do their jobs better. Providing these teams with additional coaching to help them become digitally-savvy is also important as this drives enablement and enablement drives engagement.

Navigate the new rules of engagement

Physical meetings between team members and even clients have taken a backseat now. 

Even star sales performers have to rework, re-evaluate, and re-structure how to communicate effectively with team members and clients to have relevant and outcome-driven conversations. 

Organizations have to help their sales teams adopt the right communication strategies and develop their intuitiveness to identify passive cues even when they are over video or phone conversations. They have to help the sales teams further develop their innate capability to pick up implied needs along with the explicit needs of the client. This can be achieved with coaching. 

Helping teams realize and internalize the importance of seamless communication and how it impacts collaboration becomes essential to drive out feelings of frustration. 

Managers have to work closely with team members, identify their coaching needs, especially for technical and power skills, and ensure that team members are connected to the right coaches who can help them adapt to this new world of work. This consequently drives employee engagement since the teams see that the organization is invested to help them navigate this new world.

Develop a coaching culture

Developing a strong coaching culture is imperative to drive employee engagement for remote sales teams. 

Statistics reveal that such a culture can increase employee engagement by 56%, impact employee retention rates by 45%, and drive an increase in productivity by 51%. A coaching culture also impacts the leadership pipeline positively and results in 36% faster leadership development. 

However, there is an art and science behind creating such a culture. One of the most critical aspects of this is to ensure that the remote sales teams get relevant and contextual coaching. For this, it is essential to move away from guesswork and employ data-driven strategies (such as Personality Assessment tests or Behavioral Analysis tests) to identify the exact coaching needs of the salespeople and ensure the right, skill-specific coach-mentee pairing. 

Read: The Key Characteristics of Meaningful Sales Coaching and Mentoring Interactions

Adopting an AI-driven coaching platform can alleviate this burden and help organizations join the right dots to help their remote sales teams become more enabled.

Charter a growth plan

Salespeople are highly growth-driven. They thrive in high-pressure environments and are motivated by the number games. Their growth plans have been suddenly tossed, because of this new world of work. Most sales teams are grappling with how to nurture sales leads, meet sales projections, and overshoot their targets. The inability to help the sales teams navigate these hurdles will lead to frustration and disengagement at work.

As such, organizations have to design clear growth plans for their sales teams, identify their high-potential employees, and help them develop critical leadership skills to help them understand how they can grow professionally within the company. This becomes especially important to drive engagement for the most dominant demographic within organizations – the millennials and Gen Z. 

Build trust

Trust is a big motivator of engagement, especially for remote sales teams. 

When teams are not spending enough time together, there is a lack of visibility, individual accomplishments do not get recognized. If managers do not walk the talk themselves, teams can become susceptible to internal conflicts and mistrust. While this is bad for any team, in a remote setting, this can be disastrous and lead to seriously disengaged and unmotivated employees.

Organizations thus have to build bridges to promote teamwork and collaboration, take active steps to acknowledge individual and team achievements, recognize discretionary efforts, and be open to receiving feedback. Frequent and clear communication, prompt response to messages, and being available for team members to help them manage the challenges of this new work environment demonstrate commitment and investment towards employee success and help to build trust. 

Additionally, it is equally important to help managers understand the value of trust and coach them to fine-tune their team management skills to meet the needs of this new normal. 

It is equally important to give leadership coaching in the COVID overhaul and focus on building things like emotional intelligence and empathy. Taking calculated and measured steps help in building trust and this trust begets engagement.

Engagement Strategies for Remote Sales Teams 

There is always a silver lining in every dark cloud. While managing and engaging a remote sales team may seem like big challenges, but they also present the opportunity to expand the sales footprint and organizational presence. 

Setting accurate goals, encouraging seamless communication, and establishing the right processes mean half the job done. The rest can all be managed by focusing heavily on coaching and helping employees do their jobs with ease. Provide the support they need to move along their career path and help them navigate the frustrations that emerge in this new normal. 

Connect with us to see how our AI-powered coaching platform can super-charge your remote sales team and keep them engaged, productive, and invested.

 

By Varnika Garg, Product Leader Intern

According to a research conducted by Hubspot, 69% of employees working in the US say they would work harder if they were better engaged and appreciated. That is how crucial employee engagement and retention have become in today’s time. Especially with the current pandemic and the shift to WFH, companies must invest more time and effort in acknowledging and connecting to their employees to keep them motivated and happy.

Surveys are a great tool when it comes to systemizing user input to amplify the business output. Managers are often struggling to identify the key factors behind dissatisfied employees. Here, surveys act as pulse checks to assess employee “happiness levels” and thereby increase morale by conducting fun events, understanding best practices and giving incentives to support the employees and keep them integrated. They specifically help in measuring and monitoring engagement among employees or to solve unanswered questions on employee skill gaps.

Surveys have many conventional uses, but Numly breaks the norms by using them rather differently. Numly’s AI-enabled coaching platform – ‘NumlyEngage’ uses surveys in a variety of ways to get insights on experiences, skills and to drive engagement between coaches and mentees. 

Ever thought you could be a coach to your colleague or a friend at the workplace? And how to even know about that? 

NumlyEngage utilizes various types of surveys such as pulse surveys, employee engagement surveys, surveys for programs, and many upcoming aspects like fun surveys.

How Numly uses them

NumlyEngage incorporates these surveys to quantify and measure the skill level of employees. Based on the data gathered from them, the platform’s in-built gamification model defines a healthy ratio of coaches and mentees, with a coach being a mentor who can guide another colleague who is weak a particular skill and a mentee being someone who needs guidance and mentorship to pick up that skill. The platform even lets the mentee get connected to external coaches who are very proficient in their fields.

AI-enabled technology

With the upskilling of employees becoming the need of the hour, NumlyEngage’s surveys are designed to track employees’ hard and soft skills gap. The platform uses its AI-powered algorithm to then map and recommend upskilling programs out of an extensive list to enroll and learn from. It not only recommends the programs but also provides the right analytics around them and tracks their progress as well.

These surveys include a powerful set of questions mapped to various skills, are backed by a user-friendly mechanism and can also be leveraged as ready-to-use templates for various programs. Cleverly integrated into the platform, these surveys will help establish a link to all the important elements of the product and will provide just the necessary metrics a manager needs to help his employees stay motivated and focus on their growth via learning and development.

What’s new?

People often tend to synonymize surveys to be “boring” and “time consuming”. Numly plans to launch a series of “fun surveys” which are short, light-hearted, and add just the right amount of fun to the time spent on the platform. They are designed to ensure that employees do not find their platform interactions monotonous and are motivated to continue their learning and coaching journey with their network. NumlyEngage will automatically guide the employee journey on the platform with the help of AI-generated nurture touchpoints, which are specifically designed to increase interactions and scale up the engagement levels.

Takeaways

In a nutshell, Numly has made use of surveys to extract critical information at various business process stages that clearly define the gaps in employee engagement and skill development. Regular surveys and check-ins can help organizations keep their employees engaged, stay aware of potential communication problems and gaps, and provide recommendations to enable seamless workflows. Well thought out and delivered surveys can really change the game by giving managers the necessary insights on employee data which may not be visible otherwise and can help dive deep into the employee psychology to best meet their needs and aspirations for career development.

By Shalini Ramakrishnan, Director of Product Marketing

Most employees promoted to the role of the manager are the ones who are the star performers and high-potential employees

However, assuming that individuals who are great at their job will be equally great managers is pushing the luck. This is because the skills needed to become a great manager are vastly different from those needed to succeed as an individual contributor. 

It is hardly a surprise that great, star employees often struggle as new managers. In fact, statistics reveal that six out of ten managers said the challenges associated with managing this career transition come second only to dealing with divorce! And with dispersed teams and remote working becoming the new normal, the challenges for new managers have got more complicated. 

Here are seven challenges that new managers need to find solutions to navigate this new world of work without losing their minds.

Read: Common Mistakes Managers Make While Coaching Their Teams

Manage ‘transition anxiety’

The ‘new manager’ story is quite familiar. Mostly, employees work hard to get promoted to the role of the manager. And while the new managers are excited about their new roles, the reality hits home – that they are essentially alone, they are unsure of what is really expected of them, and they have to navigate this new realm of work by building new connections (mostly without the support of their trusted group of peers). 

Many new managers, especially technical managers, end up battling these feelings, or “transition anxiety” mainly because they and the organizations they work for are solely focused on building their ‘hard skills’. However, it is the soft skills that give the power needed to blaze through this new role and establish credibility. 

Organizations thus need to help their new managers build their power or soft skills like emotional intelligence, collaboration skills, communication skills, or the other skills needed to build new networks and manage their job roles. By doing this, organizations can ably help them manage this transition anxiety and move on to become strong, resilient managers. 

Build trust 

Building trust is one of the hardest jobs of a new manager. It gets even harder in this new normal characterized by the lack of physical interactions and the rise of remote working. It can be hard to build authentic connections in the absence of face-to-face conversations. It can be complicated to understand team dynamics. Understanding how each individual team member operates and how to motivate them can be gargantuan. As such, it can become harder to build trust.

It is imperative to learn and decode the management style that will work in today’s environment. Therefore, organizations must coach new managers on behaviors that build trust, enable them to lead by example, and help them establish their credibility by building trust. 

Re-thinking meetings and navigating the communication chasm 

Remote working amplifies existing challenges considerably. For new managers, this can make it inherently harder to navigate the organization and establish a balanced relationship with their teams. Understanding processes that work and the ones that don’t within the teams and discovering new methods to connect with the team become essential to drive high-performance.  For this, new managers might need to re-think meetings and communication patterns. 

Meetings, for example, have to become more efficient. For this, the new managers need to develop capabilities like understanding collaboration requirements, setting meeting objectives clearly, and ensuring participation. Choosing the right meeting format and technology, translating how objectives will translate into activity, how to integrate break-out effectively, etc. become important skills to lead the team efficiently. For this, they need direction on how to communicate effectively by building empathy and understanding, both of the work and of the people. 

Establishing a leadership style 

Becoming a new manager is a far cry from the days when becoming a manager meant becoming a boss with a capital ‘B.’ Today, managers need effective leadership styles that are relevant and drive outcomes rather than drive team members crazy. 

New managers have to understand the tenets of leadership to become leaders who work tirelessly to grow their team members. They need to learn to be respectful and yet, authoritative. They need to be problem-solvers without spoon-feeding their team. They have to learn to be respectful, intuitive, and empathetic to gain the trust of their team members. 

Organizations need to coach new managers to understand the dynamics of their new job roles and help them care for their team members. Coaching helps them progress along their career trajectories while making sure that the team remains highly productive and motivated irrespective of their location. 

Conflict and change management 

Managers spend a lot of time managing conflict and change. Since the world of work has become enveloped in a myriad of interdependencies, new managers have to work on developing robust communication strategies to manage these complexities emerging out of change and conflict.

They must develop empathy levels and work on improving their emotional quotient while remaining on the path of continuous personal development. This is essential as most new managers struggle to work out effective solutions either because they cannot understand a problem from the perspective of the employee experiencing it. They might also be lacking in the emotional vocabulary required to empathize without judgment and provide the right solution.

Developing strong conflict resolution capabilities becomes essential especially as the world of work is in a constant state of VUCA (Volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity) and constant change. New managers need coaching to ably and proactively navigate and avoid conflict when possible and take rapid and effective steps when it presents itself. Quite naturally, organizations have to help new managers understand the slippery slopes of conflict management and help them develop robust conflict management styles. 

In Conclusion

Along with all of these traits, organizations need to help new managers develop a positive perspective, balance productivity with well-being, improve decision-making capabilities, and help them deliver greater value to the organization.

It can be challenging to be a new manager. With the remote work situation becoming a mainstay, the challenge becomes even greater. It can be isolating for new managers to establish their authority as for most it means that they are no longer a ‘part of the crew’ and that relationships at work aren’t the same as when they were individual contributors. Instead of trying to get on to the ‘good side’ of people to navigate their new job role, new managers need the support to identify how to ‘connect’ with their team members in honest, authentic, and impactful ways. 

Connect with us to understand how an AI-driven coaching platform can give your new managers the head start they need to assume and traverse their new roles with dexterity and confidence.