The working world continues to change and evolve, and the events of the last two years have led to many businesses adopting an entirely remote approach to working. Even those that still have physical offices have implemented flexible and hybrid working to allow for continued growth in the popularity of remote work and to remain competitive in the talent market. However, it isn’t as simple as what an employer or employee prefers, it often comes down to behavioural science.
Adopting a new approach to work
Not having a bricks and mortar building isn’t a barrier to success. We don’t have physical offices, and the entire business works remotely – in a place that suits employees and encourages comfortability and productivity.
Although we are a remote business, we have put a variety of practices in place that allow us to continue to foster culture, collaboration and performance, such as team building days, and company seminars and invest heavily in our use of technology – something that other company leaders should also be considering to boost employee engagement.
Through behavioural science, businesses can ensure they take a fundamentally good concept and positive societal change and execute it in a way that is right for future workforces
Remote working: is it for everyone?
Some employees thrive in a remote working environment, whereas others face several challenges. Remote working must be built upon a solid combination of well-being and performance, as well as the implementation of a remote working strategy.
This poses a critical question for many businesses: ‘How do you identify those that have difficulty working from home, and more importantly, how do you support their adaptation?’
We’ve carried out research that demonstrates behavioural science is the answer. And with 20% of employees reporting that they feel lonely whilst at work, it is something that more businesses should be looking into.
Considering the younger generations
The prevalence of Generation Z in HR considerations is encouraging, but when it comes to remote work, much is taken as assumed when it comes to preferences and ‘what’s best for business.’
As the first members of Generation Alpha will be entering the world of work within the next five years; businesses and recruiters should be considering the impact that lockdown has had on their education and whether this will lead to an embrace, or rebellion, of remote working.
The only generation to have lived a life in and out of lockdowns, Generation Alpha was forced to adapt to a life of home-schooling, and should therefore be much more equipped for a future of remote working.
Encompassing the power of behavioural science
Through behavioural science, businesses can ensure they take a fundamentally good concept and positive societal change and execute it in a way that is right for future workforces. We have been able to identify behavioural traits via a relationship axis and a work axis.
For the ‘relationship’ axis, the analyses show that the individuals who manage long-distance relationships with the most difficulty and feel most isolated share personality traits and motivations relating to:
- A need to have work centred on relationships and collaboration with others
- A need for recognition
- A way of thinking that is very operational and rooted in the present
Regarding the ‘work’ axis, people with a natural affinity for working remotely show:
- Naturally strong autonomy and an ability to make decisions
- An ability to navigate uncertainty
- A natural ability to manage their work and are self-disciplined
- Above-average reasoning skills
Behavioural science is the ultimate tool to boost employee engagement, performance and importantly, work satisfaction
Is behavioural science the future?
Behavioural science builds an evidence-based understanding of people’s requirements and how people react to working in different environments. Employers can use this information to build strategies that ensure that employees are not only happy and content within their roles, but are highly motivated, too.
So yes, behavioural science might just be the future. With businesses having to consider much more than just the quality of a candidate, behavioural science is the ultimate tool to boost employee engagement, performance and importantly, work satisfaction.