Latta acknowledged that a blended work model, with some time spent working from home and some spent in the office, had become the new normal for those able to work this way.
“I think it's just going to be a reality of the world now that this is what we do,” he said.
One thing blended teams need to look out for, though, is that their remote workers may not feel part of the team, and Latta suggested “it’s on all of us to make everyone still feel connected.
“Our sense of belonging is profoundly important - humans got where they are through teamwork,” he said.
“It's easy to lose the sense of those people [remote workers] being out there, so we need to be really intentional about making sure it’s really easy for those people to be a part of what you're doing - that everyone gets to weigh in.
“If you don't do that you're going to have two separate teams.
“Services like Zoom or Teams are super useful, but the problem with them is that our brains have to work so much harder during online meetings, because we miss a lot of social cues.
“When we're using our energy to figure out things like group dynamics, we're just diverting resources that we need.
“One of the things that makes for highly effective teams is a sense of psychological safety, which is when you have confidence that the people around you aren't going to have a go at you, and you can talk about things, critique things, and suggest ideas, and people aren't going to think you're stupid.
“And you miss that stuff with online meetings - you don't get the same feedback, so your brain works much, much harder to try to figure out how other people are responding to the things you're saying.
“So I think online meetings have a place, but it's hugely important for anything complex or strategic or creative or conflicting, that it gets done together as people in rooms, because that's when we get lots of energy - we feed off other brains.”