Flexible working is an enabler of inclusion in the workplace, as it allows individuals to balance their work and life needs and responsibilities, no matter how they identify e.g. as someone with a disability, as a parent, or as someone who wants to go sky-diving on a Friday afternoon because that’s their thing.
Leading teams who don’t see work as a place they go to, but what they do and achieve (at the times and places that work best for them), is a critical leadership competency today. Highly engaged and talented employees are choosing to work for organisations who can offer them rewarding careers while letting them choose from a range of flexible working and leave options.
The questions that leaders typically ask are: “how do I manage performance in a team that I don’t necessarily see all the time?”. And “if I let one person work from home, won’t they all want to do it and how do we then ensure our customer and stakeholder needs are met?”.
The typical team member experience is that access to flexible working depends on who their leader is and the part of the business they work in – creating inconsistency and inequality in how flexible working decisions are made, which adversely impacts employees’ sense of fairness, engagement and belonging.
Based on my experience of the rollout of ‘All In Flex’ for Westpac Group, where all 40,000 roles at the time could be considered to be done flexibly, as well as my experience of helping clients set up flexible working cultures, this workshop is designed to be practical and experiential.
The 2-hour session is bespoke-designed for each client, to help leaders understand the organisation’s guiding principles for flexible working, how to prepare for the conversation about flexible working and how to design, test and trial solutions with their teams while meeting the needs of all their stakeholders
Learning outcomes include:
- Understanding the organisation’s approach to flexible working, including Guiding Principles for evaluating requests.
- Thinking flexibly about flexibility – the types of flexible working and leave types available that can be mix-and-matched to meet individual, team and business needs.
- An agile framework for both making and reviewing flexible working requests – what employees need to do to prepare for the conversation and how leaders can consider the request fairly by minimising unconscious bias in the decision-making. This is based on a four-step approach for both employees and managers to follow to have productive and positive conversations while de-biasing decisions (prepare-discuss-test-review).
- Practical steps for managing teams that work flexibly, how to manage performance in a flexible working environment and how to set up flexible working solutions for success (including that it’s okay to set up trial periods to test-and-check that the approach works for everyone).
- Case studies to ensure the immediate, practical application of the capability lift.
Interested in this capability? Get in touch and let’s discuss how this workshop can help your organisation embed diversity and inclusion practice and confidence.