The pandemic is over, we hope forever, but at least we can resume our lives again during the summer. The time has come that we can travel and meet each other in person again. The offices in Cluj and Iasi are open, and at Yonder, we have adopted a hybrid work experience, so we are starting to see colleagues again in person. One of the few good things that the pandemic has taught us is that we can have colleagues all over Romania, and we hired quite new Yonderists in Oradea. But how do you create good working relationships with colleagues scattered all over the country?
So a group of Yonderists from Cluj traveled to meet our new colleagues in the city of Oradea. It was the first time we met most of them in person as they joined Yonder over the past two years. Of course, everything is possible online, but nothing beats meeting face to face, and we all felt very energized and positive after the meeting. This was just one visit of many to come, not just in Oradea but with all colleagues around Romania. A new era has arrived!
We all missed a good over-the-desk chat, having in-person meetings, sitting at a table together, and in the end, building a solid foundation to develop our relationships. Personally, I found that the most challenging aspect of the remote work situation. And although Teams and Zoom are great communication channels, after two years, we all suffer from online meeting fatigue. So I valued this time together with old and new colleagues.
I am an engineer at the core, and I like to dissect subjects such as the pandemic and the changes we’ve been through. The pandemic shifted how we look at working relationships and forced us to experiment with new collaboration models. And so we did! Most IT-related companies switched to working fully remote, which demonstrated its benefits. However, working remotely in the long term also brought challenges. For the first time in our working lives, we faced a new challenge: how to create, maintain, and develop personal working relationships 100 percent online. We had to bond our teams, eradicate zoom fatigue, create enthusiasm, encourage continuous learning, and keep productivity at a certain level.
Yonder has adopted a hybrid working model close to the work-from-home situation. This hybrid model allows us to choose our workplace, but we also have the challenge of balancing relationships, productivity, and employee engagement and satisfaction levels. I feel there is a sweet spot somewhere between the hybrid and full remote model. It would be best if you had the occasional in-person meetings as these are essential for building and strengthening our working relationships. Our clients depend on us as partners, creating value for them. As a Delivery Manager, I need to create teams where people trust each other, feel they are valued team members, and that the value created is a team effort.
The pandemic has taught us that we can have colleagues in other areas than just Cluj and Iasi. This was previously uncharted territory for us, but it works. The visit to our Yonder colleagues in Oradea proved that it does. We have very competent colleagues there. However, it is up to us as managers to make them feel part of the team. We need to instill the Yonder values that make us unique and create a sense of ‘one’ no matter where people are. We need to alternate online communications with in-person meetings to develop that all-important inclusiveness. It is a nice new challenge to focus more on the relational aspects of our teams and ensure that everyone feels inclusive.