The physical environment
At the office, employees used to share the same workplace experience: their desks, their lunch, their hours were similar. The hybrid world took that away. Suddenly, employees are in completely different worlds. Some work from the office, some—from home, some—from a crowded cafe. Not only their experiences are individual, they change every day.
Before hybrid, you could control workplace experience by tweaking things at the office. With hybrid, that control is gone. What remains is your control over touchpoints. For example, focused work can be improved with a co-working space subscription and a noise cancelling headset. Team work can be improved with a set of software tools and subsidized hi-speed wifi. Most people operations team were quick to figure this out.
The social environment
Hybrid also changed the way people connect socially. Not only do they spend less time together, their social groups are much smaller. But there is an upside. The relationships between your employee social groups are much stronger, and the desire to be seen is stronger.
Similar to the physical environment, the social environment in your workplace is now fragmented. You have no control over the social experience of your employees. Instead, you need to equip employees with tools to nurture their own micro-communities.
Hubspot’s social event program
- Company-wide events
- Office events
- Employee-initiated meetups
A few times a quarter, Hubspot hosts company-wide events. But instead of flying everyone to one location or having these events virtually, Hubspot adopted a truly hybrid approach. Let’s take their company-wide ice cream social, for example.
If you walk into any Hubspot office—big or small—you’ll see Hubspot leaders serving ice cream scoops to their employees. It’s more than just a fun event with free ice cream. It is a symbol of leadership and community at Hubspot: leaders are commitment to serving their teams, and teams should be committed to serving customers.
It used to be that entire teams worked from the same office. This is not the case anymore. A lot of people working from Hubspot’s San Francisco office, for example, have their entire team elsewhere. When we chatted to employees there, they said that they didn’t see a point in coming to the office every day—unless their home wifi wasn’t working. At the same time, they said that they missed seeing coworkers in person.
That’s why Hubspot started organizing smaller office events. Spaciously helped with Hubspot’s candlemaking social, and it was exhilarating to see people make new friends over a fun social activity.
Hubspot sets aside a stipend for employees to host their own meetups. Meetups range from brown bag lunches to happy hours. The important part is that employees have the freedom to come up with their own ideas and get the tools to execute them.
Are you ready to help your employees reconnect?
You might be reading this and thinking, “This is all great but I already have a lot on my plate.” We can help you create and execute a social events program across all of your locations—without breaking the bank.
Check out some of our event ideas. We’re here to help nurture your culture.