<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=2049049351998780&amp;ev=PageView&amp;noscript=1">

Using AI to help your hybrid workforce perform better

Jason Diamond Arnold

August 10, 2023

“Leaders can adapt their styles, using AI-driven tools, to embrace continuous feedback and motivate and empower their teams - tailored to the individual - versus a “one size fits all” approach."

The Dawn of the Intelligence Workforce

Motivating employees requires understanding and effort. The hybrid workforce combines digital and physical workspaces, and businesses must adapt to that new flexibility. AI is changing how teams achieve success by creating tools that increase productivity and help team members focus on what matters most.

Challenges Faced by Leaders in a Hybrid Work Environment

As leaders embark on their journey into the hybrid work environment, they encounter formidable challenges that demand adaptation to changes—or risk skills and organizations becoming extinct.

The Challenge of Creating a Digital Headquarters

Remote work presents challenges for leaders who must ensure seamless communication and connectivity among team members. Adaptability and resourcefulness are crucial in this new era of work. Many companies are now aiming to establish a "Digital Headquarters" that centralizes all platforms for the employee life cycle, including recruitment, onboarding, performance, client management, learning, and surveys. Communication requires synchronization, including email, live, and video conferences, to name a few. Organizational culture demands clear and transparent communication of the organization's mission, vision, values, and ongoing strategy. 

In a dispersed team, leaders need to foster unity and keep the team engaged. They must balance flexibility with accountability; provide autonomy yet balance to achieve necessary performance and compliance. Recognizing and embracing these challenges can facilitate success.

The Challenge of Fostering Collaboration in Hybrid Teams

Collaboration is vital in hybrid teams. It begins with a clear and focused strategy for the organization. Leaders should clarify the company’s strategy and foster a strong team culture by collaboratively setting goals and expectations aligned with organizational strategy. Once expectations are established, regular communication around progress toward team and individual goals is critical in any workforce, and particularly essential in a hybrid or virtual work environment. Effective communication channels, such as virtual team meetings and real-time one-to-ones between managers and direct reports, are critical for remote work.

The Challenges of Applying Effective Leadership and Motivation Practices

"Why Motivating People Doesn’t Work…and What Does," by best-selling author Susan Fowler, explores the difficulties of leadership and motivation in hybrid or virtual work environments. Leaders must balance flexibility and accountability as the workplace evolves while maintaining team cohesion and communication. Understanding team members' motivational outlooks is vital for leaders to boost engagement and productivity. Leaders can adapt their styles, using AI-driven tools, to embrace continuous feedback and motivate and empower their teams - tailored to the individual - versus a “one size fits all” approach. Susan Fowler's book offers valuable strategies for creating a harmonious and thriving hybrid workspaces.

Leveraging AI to Assess Employee Motivation

AI will revolutionize employee motivation by providing insights into individual motivational needs. Inspire's Performance Management platform uses AI and DISC assessments to prompt and assess employees, leading to more productive discussions with team leaders and managers. Constructive discussions with AI-assisted evaluations can align individuals' roles with goals, boosting productivity.

AI-Generated Motivation Conversations

Here's how a motivational conversation could happen in Inspire using AI technology:  

  • An employee logs into Inspire Software and opens up their 1:1 app. They briefly review their goals before a video call with their manager.
  • The employee needs clarification about their contribution to a goal they have been invited to collaborate on, so they use the AI-generated Conversation Starter feature inside the Inspire platform.
  • The employee prompts the AI Inspire Guide:
    • "Help me start a conversation with my manager about my motivation toward this team goal, which feels outside of my highest priorities this performance cycle."
  • The following AI-generated Conversation Starter, using Susan Fowler’s science-backed approach to motivation science, helps the employee start a conversation with their manager in preparation for their next one-to-one meeting:
    • Employee: "I’ve been reflecting on my motivation toward this goal. According to Susan Fowler’s Motivation Science research, the goal might feel imposed on me. Finding ways to align my priorities with this team's objective is essential. I value our team’s goals and understand their significance to the company. However, I face some challenges in fully prioritizing this goal within the scope of my current responsibilities. Can we discuss this matter further during our next one-to-one meeting or respond inside the Inspire 1:1 platform?"
  • The employee can edit or customize the conversation starter, adding "their voice" or deleting anything they believe will help improve the upcoming conversation with their manager. AI is acting as a mentor and facilitator for a smarter and healthier dialogue.
  • The manager receives an email notification that a direct report has submitted a comment in their Inspire 1:1 app, enabling the manager to link to the conversation. Once the manager has read the comment, they can respond manually or use the AI-generated Inspire Guide to generate a response:
    • Manager: "Thanks for expressing your concerns related to your motivational outlook. A sense of autonomy and a clear link between the goal and your growth is crucial for motivation. I’m sorry if the goal feels imposed. I value your perspective and want to work together to find a solution for the team and your motivational outlook toward the goal. Let’s look deeper at how I can clarify the value your role brings to this goal. Then let’s also discuss if there is any shift in your motivation."

Integrating AI into Hybrid Work Strategies

AI integration in hybrid work strategies has revolutionized collaboration and teamwork. AI-driven tools enable healthier communication, allow managers to automate repetitive tasks, and learn from the responses generated. Real-time information sharing empowers teams to work cohesively, optimizing workflows and identifying potential roadblocks. AI-enabled team building strengthens the digital tapestry, uniting team members across distances through a shared workspace. 

Developing a Motivated Workforce Using AI

The future of work is a partnership between humans and AI. Combined productivity and creativity can be maximized to solve everyday issues and the most complicated and extreme issues. At Inspire, we are partnering with experts like Susan Fowler to integrate best practices in leadership and performance management into the flow of work. Used wisely, AI can empower, connect, and enhance the human experience wherever your people work from.

Inspire Software is a holistic workflow platform designed to teach and assist organizations to create and monitor smarter goals and better practices for themselves. Inspire integrates science-backed principles directly into the platform to help individuals and teams coordinate and accomplish objectives more efficiently, all while simultaneously developing every employee into better leaders at your organization.

Schedule a demo now to implement AI and motivation science into your organization.

Learn more about the Inspire approach at inspiresoftware.com.