In early June, ProFocus hosted another great discussion with technology leaders from the Portland area and beyond. These roundtable discussions focused on maintaining and reviving creativity and collaboration in the workplace.   

James Lund, the Director of Operations at ProFocus Technology, moderated the discussion. The leaders in attendance offered various advice, best practices, and lessons learned. The following are notes from our one-hour virtual discussion. 

WORKPLACE CHANGES

As tech managers reflect on the changes and challenges brought on by the pandemic it’s clear that remote work will have a lasting impact on the culture of companies. Prior to the pandemic, the tech industry was already dealing with a distributed workforce and an increasing demand for work from home flexibility. The pandemic has shown many that there are no excuses for this lack of flexibility and that the biggest push back comes from management that refuses to adapt.  

The shift to a remote workforce has forced many leaders to reimagine productivity, engagement, and efficiency. Although many of the tech leaders described challenges with maintaining collaboration and creativity, they also began to see that the biggest changes were for leadership and management, not necessarily their engineers. These managers reflected on what worked and what didn’t to shape and unify their company’s vision moving forward.  

Here are some questions to ask yourself as you reflect and plan for the future of your team and your company: 

MEETINGS  

  • Who actually needs to be in the meeting? 
  • Can you shorten this recurring meeting and still be effective? 
  • Who is speaking up and who is staying quiet on your team? 
  • Who prefers video meetings? Why or Why not?  
  • How often do we use body language to assume engagement? What other ways can we communicate and listen? 

COLLABORATION  

  • How does remote collaboration work or not work for your team?  
  • What tools were effective for collaboration? 
  • Did this style of collaboration help some people participate? Did it discourage participation with some? 
  • How will collaboration change in the future? 
  • When is collaboration helpful and when does it hurt the process? 

TOOLS 

Layering tools to fit a specific team’s needs helped many of our managers navigate collaboration. Here are a few that came up in the discussion: 

  • Slack 
  • Miro 
  • Draw io 
  • Lucichart 
  • Zoom  
  • Jira 
  • Notion 

ProFocus aims to help local tech leaders grow their networks and learn from the successes and challenges of their peers during these roundtable discussions. For more insights about how Portland’s tech leadership is navigating the pandemic check out the key takeaways from our past discussions.   

If you or someone you know is interested in learning more about our upcoming events, please email us at info@profocustechnology.com.