Poor communication, lack of clarity and difficulty managing conflict are three universal problems for leaders, but hybrid and remote work present those challenges in different ways, Marlene Chism writes. Chism covers each area and offers guidance for leaders to improve their management rather than blame hybrid work.



The hybrid work environment creates new challenges for leaders, including:

  • How to keep everyone focused amid so much change
  • When and how to communicate when some workers are on site while others work remotely
  • How to make fair decisions
  • How to manage conflict when employees are out of sight and out of mind

As a leader, the hybrid workplace can be viewed as a challenge to overcome or an opportunity to leverage. Innovative leaders can use this time of instability and uncertainty to define leadership of the future.

Here are three ways leaders can create stability in an uncertain and ever-changing work environment.


1. Clarity

Hybrid leaders use clarity as their No. 1 tool for getting results. Clarity can be as simple as guiding an employee to the next right step, sharing a big vision for the future or accurately describing a particular situation and desired outcome.

The No. 1 rule I share with my clients is this: In all “drama,” there’s always a lack of clarity. Where there’s conflict or confusion, the first question you should ask is not “Who’s at fault” but “Where is there a lack of clarity?”

Here’s a checklist of areas that contribute to a lack of clarity

  • Policies that are outdated or unenforced
  • Constantly changing priorities
  • Ineffective digital communications
  • Misunderstanding about how decisions are made


Unclear job descriptions