Quick summary: Two leaders of our San Diego Connected Hub share their strategies for balancing in-person interaction opportunities with the remote-work needs of our team members.
Ever since Logic20/20 launched its Connected Hubs model last summer, we as a company have been exploring innovative approaches to creating opportunities to interact in person while also accommodating remote work schedules.
As one of our larger Hubs, encompassing about 20 people, San Diego is an ideal place to explore hybrid models that balance remote work with in-person office days. Currently we are working towards choosing one day a month—the Third Friday—on which we invite all local Logicians to come in to work at a shared office location.
Even though we come from different practice areas and work with different clients in different industries, we can all benefit from each other’s expertise and fresh ideas in face-to-face conversations.
Benefits of our hybrid work model
Even in these early stages of the pilot, a wide array of benefits have emerged.
Even though we come from different practice areas and work with different clients in different industries, we can all benefit from each other’s expertise and fresh ideas in face-to-face conversations. If we’re dealing with a problem, it’s great to be able to turn around and ask someone for their ideas on how to handle it. And if one of us is working on a proposal, for example, we can invite our colleagues to gather around a whiteboard and help put together a storyboard.
We also use these opportunities to share what we’re working on internally and cross-pollinate ideas. The Digital Transformation practice, for instance, is piloting a “buddy program” for new hires. Interacting with colleagues at office days gives Digital Transformation team members the chance to share our experience and spark interest among consultants in other practice areas.
Every time the Hub meets up for an office day, we’re creating a microcosm of the larger Logic20/20 employee culture. When we walk into our shared office space, it’s like we’re seeing our friends who also just happen to be coworkers.
Office days are also a great opportunity for new hires to have a personal experience with Logic20/20’s employee culture. Through casual conversations with their new colleagues, they can gain valuable on-the-fly career advice and even forge new mentoring relationships.
Social and team-building events
We always plan social events, such as trivia nights and happy hours, after every office day. This gives us the chance to get to know each other on an even more personal level and build camaraderie. We’ve also discovered that we have some big-time trivia buffs in our Hub, so we’re looking to increase the frequency of those outings.
When we walk into our shared office space, it’s like we’re seeing our friends who also just happen to be coworkers.
Personal access to leadership
We are fortunate enough to have Will Schmidt, the General Manager of Logic’s consulting practice, as a member of the San Diego Hub. Will participates actively in our office days and social events, giving team members the chance to hear his insights on what the company is working on and learn how they can contribute. Other members of our executive team periodically come down from Seattle to visit, creating further opportunities for Hub members to spend one-on-one time with our top leadership.
Addressing the challenges
As we experiment with our hybrid model, we’ve encountered some challenges, such as accommodating consultants who spend most of their days on calls. We encourage these Hub members to plan ahead as much as possible and to schedule calls around office days. Even if they wind up spending part of the day in a phone booth (yes, sometimes it’s unavoidable), we can all benefit from their presence.
We are also working to accommodate our Hub’s geographic expanse. The city of San Diego covers more than 340 square miles, and our consultants are located across all areas of town. No single location is equally convenient for all Hub members, so we have been alternating between shared office spaces in the downtown area and in La Jolla, which helps us to accommodate those living further south and further north.
Building the optimal formula
Our hybrid model continues to be a work in progress as we seek an optimal blend of work-from-home and in-person models. So far, the overall feedback has been overwhelmingly positive, and we look forward to exploring more ways to bring people together as we enjoy the Logic20/20 experience.
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Melanie Tran is a Manager in Logic20/20’s Digital Transformation practice.