As leaders, it is important to acknowledge the ongoing impact of the shift from full-time office roles to hybrid and remote work. The day-to-day lives and productivity of our employees hit an accelerated period of change in recent years and we need to continue to create realistic expectations for your team to ensure that processes and procedures are being optimized for success. 

Be Empathetic.

Be it balancing family and a full-time workload or caring for a sick relative we’re all doing the best we can. As a leader and as a teammate, it’s important to be empathetic and considerate of what your colleagues are going through. If an employee is struggling, ask them what you can do to help. Maybe it’s allowing for a more flexible work schedule, or offering an extra pair of hands to help them carry their project across the finish line. Just showing that you care, even in small ways, can make a big difference in the lives of your employees. 


Create a culture of open communication. When find ourselvs working miles and time zones apart, office communication is not so tangible and as easy as popping over to someone’s desk or catching up over coffee. To keep your company culture strong, consider creating new avenues for communication like weekly virtual all-hands meetings, randomized virtual coffees with team members, or setting time aside at the beginning or end of each meeting to catch up. Sync with your teams about which communication methods work best for them – some teams thrive best on Slack, while others prefer video calls, status emails at the or regularly scheduled in person meetings.

Set Clear Expectations and Check In. 

Setting clear expectations is vitally important as a leader. Be sure that your employees understand what their assignments are, the deliverables and the due dates, and align those with timelines and benchmarks. Check in with your employees regularly about progress – this can help you identify roadblocks that you can remove for your team. Check in, and check in again. It may seem like overkill, but everything runs much more smoothly when everyone’s on the same page. 

Consistently Think About How to Improve Systems and Procedures.

Listen to your team, pay attention to what’s working and what’s not, and think about how those systems could be improved. If the issues are technical, try something new – there are innovative tools being developed and released all the time. If they’re personal issues – like juggling childcare and work obligations – ask your employees what about the challenges they face, and then collaborate with your leadership team to develop systems and procedures to solve for those.

As technology and opportunity collide, we continue to see innovative and new approaches to the ‘future of work,’  the best we can do as leaders is to be empathetic, supportive, and creative when it comes to finding solutions for today’s needs – and tomorrow’s.


  • Anne Huntington Sharma

    President and Board Member, Huntington Learning Center

    Anne Huntington Sharma is the President and a Board Member of Huntington Learning Center, the nation's leading tutoring and test prep provider. Anne oversees business strategy and growth initiatives, including partnerships, marketing, digital and technological transformation, and franchise development.  Anne is involved in the arts as a collector, producer, philanthropist, curator, and founder of AMH Industries, a creative agency for contemporary art and culture. She is an associate producer on the Emmy-nominated HBO documentary, 'The Price of Everything’ and an associate producer on the documentary ‘The Art of Making It’. To date, Anne has curated more than 30 exhibits across the country and raised over $30 million for various philanthropic causes. Additionally, Anne is active with arts, education, and business organizations. She is a board member for the Learning Disabilities Association of America, Art Advisory Board member for NYC’s Coalition for the Homeless, member of the Women’s Franchise Committee for the International Franchise Association, member of the International Director’s Council at the Guggenheim Museum, and a founding member of the Future Leadership Council at the Whitney Museum. For her service, Anne has been recognized by SmartCEO, Apollo Magazine, and Moves Magazine. She has also been honored as a Woman of Wonder by Franchise Dictionary Magazine, named to the NJBIZ Education Top 50 list, as well as the NJBIZ 40 under 40. Most recently, Anne was named one of NJBIZ’s Best 50 Women in Business and was awarded the Silver distinction for the American Business Awards, Maverick category. Anne received her BA from Colgate University.