How to Create Rules for Hybrid Teams

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There are no rules for hybrid teams. Here is how to create them.

We are at the beginning of a post-pandemic work revolution where corporate hierarchies have begun radically re-ordering themselves. Teams spending more time working remotely will have more autonomy and it will be up to them to create the rules and norms to help them succeed and grow an effective work culture.
Welcome to the age of Hybrid Club.

The first rule of Hybrid Club: There are no rules. Therefore it is up to you to make them.

Expect many organizations to fail in creating effective hybrid strategies. This is because there is no one-size fits-all approach to running an effective hybrid team. Many will try to apply top-down rules, but this is the old way of thinking and will leave many employees feeling underappreciated. They will leave and go to companies who better adjust to this new working world where there is a healthy work environment and happier clients.

In Hybrid Club, new working norms will not be dictated from the top. Individuals and teams will have more autonomy to figure out what works best.

What works for one group may not work for others. Individual autonomy, meet collective cooperation. If you are waiting for someone else to tell you what to do, you will not do well in Hybrid Club.

Where to start? To improve how your team works together, to increase individual accountability, and to reduce the possibility for hybrid team conflict, consider creating a Team Communication Contract.

A Team Communication Contract includes four sections:

  1. Define Norms and Taboos
  2. Create team procedures
  3. Clarify expectations
  4. Specify the consequences for failing to fulfill these expectations

Spend time with your team to work through these topics together. The more specifically you describe your team expectations, roles, and procedures, the greater chance you have for success. This contract should be reviewed and updated regularly.

Power dynamics across organizations are shifting which means it is up to YOU to address the individual and team issues and re-build new hybrid working norms. This brings us to the final rule of Hybrid Club: This is your Hybrid Club. YOU must figure it out!


Kyle D. Hegarty works with global companies, helping them strengthen remote teams and grow global sales. His first book, The Accidental Business Nomad: A Survival Guide for Working Across a Shrinking Planet won the 2021 Axiom Business Book Award and is available worldwide.

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