SMART WORK-The Final Handbook for Distant and Hybrid Groups

Jo Owen’s bio is spectacular, together with having “labored with over 100 of the perfect, and a few the worst, organisations on our planet”. A former Accomplice at Accenture, extra lately he based eight NGOs; for one in every of which, Educate First, he was awarded an OBE. However, does he write ‘good reads’? The reply could also be revealed early, as he claims the honour of being the one individual to win the Chartered Administration Institute Gold Award 4 occasions for his books.

Having been writing about management, and administration apply, for a few years, Jo Owen can not actually be accused of leaping on the post-pandemic wave of media regarding ‘distant’ and ‘hybrid’ work. As a substitute, he has analysed what has labored up to now, versus what has modified – as he says, “distant and hybrid working just isn’t a short lived shift: it’s a paradigm shift”. So the result’s a well-structured information, for all of us, as we work to a larger or lesser extent in distant groups, with colleagues whom we most frequently ‘meet’ through one in every of many video-conferencing platforms. This paradigm shift has been tougher for some than for others, and Jo gives insights into “how the pandemic shook the administration sector” particularly.

“Good Work” just isn’t solely geared toward leaders; additionally it is for all managers and their groups.  Distant and hybrid working was ad-hoc in most organisations previous to Covid-19 spreading all over the world in early 2020.  The way in which we have to work now’s unfamiliar for many individuals, and uncomfortable for some.  While senior management groups have seized alternatives to alter, “many managers might be poorly outfitted” to cope with the altering world of labor thrust upon them.

What are you able to count on from this e-book?  As Jo makes clear, it’s “intentionally brief on concept”.  It’s a handbook, to assist the reader to know the post-pandemic change, determine typical present challenges, and a few methods to deal with these points.  It isn’t an MBA textbook with advanced diagrams, fashions and tutorial phrases.  It’s extra like having a wily previous mentor in e-book type; somebody who has talked to dozens of organisations and leaders, summarized it, and written it down for his mentees.  As Jo says, the e-book “focuses on what’s working in apply all over the world and in massively assorted organizations”.

The handbook explores a number of key questions:

  • Methods to break up time and work, between dwelling and workplace
  • Methods to talk and co-ordinate remotely
  • Methods to construct the right ICT construction to assist distant working
  • Methods to have efficient conferences
  • Methods to handle time and workloads
  • Methods to maintain intrinsic motivation when working remotely
  • Methods to cope with stress and burnout
  • Methods to obtain some work-life steadiness
  • Methods to handle the conflicting wants of various workers and various kinds of work: “not all work and never all employees are suited to hybrid or distant working”

‘…hybrid and distant work is right here, so let’s cope with it collectively’.

The latter level is vital, and typifies the method taken on this e-book – it isn’t evangelically espousing distant working. Somewhat, the e-book is pragmatic – i.e., ‘hybrid and distant work is right here, so let’s cope with it collectively’.

General, I discovered “Good Work” to be a helpful and simple learn. It’s a constructive e-book; it feels barely motivational, like a helpful mentoring session. If I had a criticism, it could be that extra skilled leaders and managers might learn just a few sections as platitudes, whereas others will discover all of it helpful. There are just a few clichés, and ‘tweetable’ statements which work higher in a keynote speech than in a e-book. However in any other case, it’s a good overview of the elements to contemplate when main groups out of the pandemic and into a greater future. W&P

Reviewer: Paul Carder for Work&Place

Writer: Bloomsbury Publishing, September 16, 2021 ISBN: 9781472992512

Writer:  Jo Owen



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