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Case: hybrid playbook

The challenge

When pandemic-related work restrictions were lifted in early 2022, many multinationals recognised that hybrid working was here to stay, at least for their office workers. They also realised that the various operating companies and country organisations around the world would have to adapt their hybrid strategies to local factors, customs, and regulations. So, how could headquarters then support all these different countries and regions in designing and rolling out new hybrid ways of working?

Our solution

To answer this conundrum, OrangeTrail developed a hybrid playbook. We focused on practical tips and tricks that people everywhere could apply, both individually and with their teams. To this end, the playbook consists of three types of content:

  • Scenarios – A set of typical questions, situations and issues people face as they work hybrid, which we sourced from our clients’ employees. We grouped the scenarios into four categories: meetings, teamwork, tools, and well-being.

  • Toolkits – A collection of step-by-step guides and checklists that people can implement on their own or with their team. These toolkits are all research or experience-based. Examples include: “Do you really need a meeting?” and “Creating a good channel structure in Teams”.

  • Best practices – Ideas, tips, and tricks that people can use to solve everyday hybrid-working issues. Think “Hybrid meeting etiquette” or “Personal planning for hybrid”.

How it works

The playbook interlinks the scenarios, toolkits, and best practices: issues described in the scenarios can be remedied by toolkits (usually more than one), which are illustrated by best practices. But users can also set out to implement relevant toolkits or start with inspiration from the best practices. It concludes with sections about “making it stick”, with examples for a three-week challenge and evaluation using various measurement tools and analytics.

This wealth of information is made available to all employees, supported by a social learning program. Together with some of our clients, we run support communities on their collaboration platforms where we answer questions, share experiences, and give tips on hybrid working. One of those communities is now nearing its 100 000th member!

What’s next?

The hybrid playbook is the centrepiece of OrangeTrail’s hybrid-working program. Currently, we are training people managers and coaching pilot teams for different clients in various countries. We are also looking into creating a Teams app of the playbook to make it even more accessible and user-friendly.

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