Welcome to the latest post in Robert Half’s Thought Leader Q&A series, which features insights from those who have made our company a great place to work and a premier provider of talent solutions.

This week, we feature Trisha Plovie, senior vice president, Future of Work. In this role, Trisha is developing strategies to further enhance Robert Half’s ability to provide flexible, hybrid and fully remote talent to companies around the globe.

Trisha started her career at Robert Half 25 years ago, when she became a practice group director for the company in Troy, Mich. “The opportunity to join a global talent solutions firm was highly attractive,” says Trisha. “I love helping others, and this career provides unlimited opportunity to positively impact people, whether that be job seekers, companies who need help in hiring or internal employees.”

During her long career at Robert Half, Trisha has held various leadership roles. Most recently, she was a district president in Michigan, overseeing 11 offices in that state and Ohio. “What has kept me at Robert Half for all of these years is, hands down, the extraordinary people and the unlimited opportunity for career growth,” Trisha says.

Here are some more highlights from our recent interview with Trisha:

What is a typical day like for you as the senior vice president, Future of Work?

A typical day involves communicating with Robert Half’s senior leaders, executive directors, business transformation and marketing teams, and our Future of Work stakeholders to share what we’re working on and gather additional input to help shape strategies. I also do a lot of reading about the future of work and remote work trends to keep current and determine areas of opportunity.

I’m largely focused on strategizing our current operating processes and procedures around remote work and where we can increase collaboration and clarity for our team members. I also work closely with my colleagues to continue evolving our artificial intelligence (AI)-driven matching technology for connecting companies looking to hire and active and passive candidates searching for employment opportunities.

For our workforce, I’m helping to shape the “rules of engagement” for this new remote world, placing a strong emphasis on internal collaboration. I’m looking at how we can combine cultural, digital and physical elements to create an overall employee experience and how the investments Robert Half makes today can help drive the future of that experience to create a more resilient and empowered workforce — and more connected customers, too.

How do you envision the post-pandemic future of work?

I see the future of work as “authentic” — where employees can bring their whole selves to work, and good things will happen. This includes giving employees creative freedom to still be productive while working remotely, which leads to happier staff and helps drive career longevity.

Of course, technology advancements and the adoption of technology tools will be paramount in the workplace of tomorrow. I hope to see us all work smarter, not harder.

What should businesses be doing right now to help ensure a long-term remote or hybrid work model can be successful?

I think there are three key things that organizations need to do:

  1. They should listen to what their employees are saying they want and need from the company so that they will stay.
  2. They need to make sure they have the right technology to sustain remote and hybrid work.
  3. They should have a strong onboarding plan, especially for remote employees.

How can today’s professionals prepare themselves for the future of work that will unfold over the next five to 10 years?

Technology will significantly change how we work in the decade ahead, so I recommend being an early adopter of tech enhancements and software that can help employees work smarter and more efficiently — but again, not harder. The faster your company adopts the technology, the faster your teams can embrace it.

Employees also need to be empowered to help create the future of work. New skills, mindsets and behaviors will be required to allow for resilience during periods of significant change. So, in addition to continually refining technology skills, I suggest professionals focus on developing their communication and critical-thinking skills.

How has working from home during the pandemic changed your perspective on work?

Working from home, while initially a bit awkward, helped me pivot into a new mindset that drove more creativity, collaboration and tech adoption.

However, there were no boundaries between work and home life, which resulted in me working long hours and weekends. I had to ensure I prioritized my work and home life effectively so I would not burn out. Our teams came up with creative ways to stay connected and have fun together while working remotely. It was inspiring to see them flourish and embrace our new normal.

As a side note, I would say that for the future of work, women need to be able to communicate what type of work-life balance they want and need. That includes finding balance with hybrid or remote work arrangements.

Historically, women have not always voiced their work-life balance needs because, perhaps, it could be seen as a weakness. But amid challenges like the rising costs and shortages of childcare and caretaking for family members, women embraced windowed working and untraditional hours during the pandemic and proved they could be productive.

So, talk to your manager about what you need to be highly successful — don’t be afraid to speak up.

What is a cause that is important to you, and why do you support it?

I am a huge animal supporter and have volunteered with a local dog rescue for the past eight years. We’ve fostered countless dogs over that time, fundraised to care for the dogs, celebrated dogs finding their forever homes and treasured the relationships we’ve built. I support this cause to be the voice for these animals and help change their lives for the better.

Follow Trisha Plovie on LinkedIn.

Meet other Thought Leaders at Robert Half, such as Alf Mendez and Stephanie Dolmat. And be sure to subscribe to the Robert Half newsletter for future installments of our Q&A series and to discover more unique stories, experiences and perspectives on the latest hiring trends.