Year-End Checklist for Hybrid Teams

As we edge closer to the end of 2023, it's the perfect time for hybrid teams to take a step back and prepare for the transition into the upcoming year. The unique blend of remote and in-office work has redefined the approach to professional goals and team dynamics. The end of the year is a golden opportunity for distributed teams to reflect, reassess, and realign their strategies, to ensure a seamless and successful move into the new year.

As you start planning for the year ahead, use the following checklist as a guide to set your hybrid team up for success.

✓ Assess technology and tools

Start by taking a close look at your tech stack: everything from collaboration and communication apps to project management and timeclock tools. How have your resources been working for your team? Maybe some are hitting the mark, while others could use an upgrade or a switch. Gather honest feedback from everyone and think about planning a training session early next year for any new tools. It’s important to ensure that every team member, no matter where they are, feels confident and comfortable with the technology at their disposal.

✓ Reflect on performance

Performance reviews in a hybrid setup should be more than ticking boxes; they should reflect the unique experiences and challenges faced by each team member. Why not make these reviews more conversational? In the new year, reframe performance evaluations to encourage open discussions, where personal achievements and growth areas are recognized and plans for future development are collaboratively made. Establishing a two-way feedback system can help everyone feel heard and valued.

✓ Set SMART goals

When it comes to setting goals for the new year, make them SMART: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. SMART goals are especially important for distributed teams because they create accountability and transparency. SMART goals are great for both expectation-setting and achievement planning, so make them a priority for your team in 2024 to help them succeed in everything they do.

✓ Train and grow together

The end of the year is a great time to identify the collective strengths and areas for growth within your team. Developing customized training programs that cater to the unique needs of a hybrid team can foster a culture of continuous learning and professional development. Encouraging each team member to engage in this journey not only enhances their skill set; it also contributes significantly to the team’s overall success.

✓ Update remote work policies

As you step into a new year, revisiting and refreshing remote work policies is crucial. Are the current policies accommodating the evolving needs of your hybrid team? Ensure these policies are inclusive and up to date with the latest labor laws and regulations, and that they’re conducive to your company culture and values. Remember, evaluating policies isn’t just about creating accountability; it’s about creating a supportive, fair work environment that resonates with everyone.

✓ Find ways to engage your team

In a hybrid setup, keeping the team spirit alive requires creativity. Put together virtual team-building activities and recognition programs that celebrate achievements across the board, to enhance a sense of community. Getting feedback on these initiatives can help tailor them to be more effective and enjoyable. It’s about maintaining that connection, regardless of physical location. Don’t be afraid to get people together in-person, either! Sponsor meetups in local areas or bring people together for conferences and summits to create friendly face-to-face interactions.

✓ Budget with remote work in mind

Year-end is the perfect time for a financial recap and future planning. Reflecting on the past year’s spending—especially on the hybrid work model—can offer insights into more efficient budget allocation for the year ahead. Should you get a membership to a specific coworking space? Or does it make more sense to get Deskpass for your team? Consider how to balance the budget to support both in-office and remote aspects of your team, to ensure everyone has what they need to succeed.

✓ Improve communication

Good communication is the glue that holds hybrid teams together. Plan for regular updates from leadership and create open forums for team members to voice their ideas and concerns. This can significantly boost team morale and collaboration. Also, think about offering some training in communication techniques tailored for a hybrid setup—it can really streamline interactions and prevent misunderstandings. Teach your team that effective communication comes down to their ability to connect across email, video, phone, text, and other interpersonal mediums.

✓ Optimize workspaces

Creating effective workspaces is essential. For remote workers, consider how to help them create a conducive work environment at home. For those in the office, think about how the physical space can be optimized for hot-desking and collaboration. Coworking spaces offer a change of scenery, which can be a breath of fresh air for both. Comfortable and well-thought-out workspaces can greatly enhance productivity and job satisfaction.

✓ Keep data safe and secure

Unfortunately, data breaches are all too common. Forward-thinking hybrid teams need to think about implementing robust security protocols to keep data safe. Regular audits of data backups and ongoing cybersecurity training for all team members are vital. Keeping everyone updated on the best practices for data protection helps in safeguarding sensitive information, which is an integral part in making the flex work model successful. Don’t just install cybersecurity safeguards, either. Make sure there’s a security-first culture among your remote team.

✓ Reflect and plan ahead

As the year winds down, setting aside time for the team to reflect on the past year’s journey can be incredibly valuable. Celebrate the successes, learn from the challenges, and collaboratively brainstorm ideas for the future. This reflection can foster a sense of accomplishment and pave the way for a proactive approach to the new year. More importantly, it sets a tone of camaraderie. It’s an opportunity to address your weaknesses and celebrate your strengths as a team, together.

Develop a strong foundation for success in the new year

The future of work is all about flexibility and adaptability, and Deskpass offers incredible options for hybrid teams to help them succeed. With access to workspaces across the globe, we help your team make the most of every opportunity, so they can step into the new year with a renewed sense of purpose and readiness. Download the app and start the year off on the right foot, working from the right space.

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