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Roadmap to better in a radically altered post pandemic workplace

Better Manager’s Roadmap: Reflect, Reskill, Rebuild
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@cmi_managers launch Better Manager’s Roadmap: Reflect, Reskill, Rebuild

World leaders and influencers have found a new mantra to get excited about. 

The words ‘Build Back Better’ seem to have become contagious, being uttered by everyone from Boris Johnson and Justin Trudeau to Jacinda Arden and Joe Biden. However, trendy buzzwords and catchphrases parroted by the powerful can rapidly become tiresome, unless they’re backed up by real action. And that action needs to bring tangible improvements to the lives of the many and not just the few.

Most of us will spend around a third of our lives working, and with the unprecedented Government imposed lockdowns since March 2020, there have been some radical changes to the way we work. From juggling back-to-back video calls and homeschooling to overcoming dodgy wi-fi connections and isolation, the way we work has been turned upside down and put through the mangle. Conversations at the water cooler have been replaced with bosses commenting on your choice of interior design. However while many may have missed their morning beverage from a favourite cafe, workplace banter and after work drinks, others have enjoyed the increased flexibility that enforced homeworking has brought. 

As we emerge from lockdown and large numbers of people prepare to return to the workplace, managers may be wondering how on earth they can manage their teams now the old workplace conventions have been shattered.

At the Chartered Management Institute (CMI), we’ve produced the Better Managers Roadmap. It’s a free resource designed for you, the manager. We’ve taken the hard learned lessons gleaned from our community during these turbulent times to help employers navigate the return to the workplace successfully. Covid-19 may have broken the workplace moulds but in the Better Managers Roadmap we give you hacks on how to build it back in a better way.

Our Roadmap explores topics such as hybrid working, wellbeing, diversity and inclusion, future skills and culture in the post lockdown landscape.  

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The research we’ve done to inform the Roadmap uncovered major new complexities around work and management. Things we found included discovering a breakdown of trust in both employers and government regarding workplace safety. We also found a desire for hybrid working, with many saying they’d quit their job if forced to return to the workplace full-time.

It’s also crucial that the views of employees and the lessons of lockdown aren’t ignored or forgotten in a stampede back to places of work. Managers must talk to their teams, build trust and respect their views and concerns on returning. Employers, meanwhile, need to develop flexible, inclusive and tolerant ways of working.

Change is never easy and it’s our hope that the Better Managers Roadmap will make our working lives less fraught post lockdown. 

Daisy Hooper, Head of Policy at Chartered Management Institute (CMI) 

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