Working from home is the new normal, for now. While we are all making adjustments, most managers are having difficulty trying to stay on top of everything that is going on. It doesn't have to feel like you have no control over the situation and "keeping an eye" on employees does not have to turn into a full time job. To give managers some guidance, I have compiled a list of tips to better lead your remote employees.
- Set clear expectations: Tell them what you expect them to do. When everyone is prepared, things can go more smoothly.
- Engage regularly: If you usually have a morning meeting at the office, have video or phone conference at the same time. Reply to emails as soon as possible. Keep multiple lines of communication open. Plan ahead. Arrange formal weekly meetings and set daily guidelines.
- Offer resources: Help them with any tech issues, make sure they have reliable tools and needed software and apps. Offer them training and orientation.
- Trust your team: Some companies have been on the fence for years about letting their workers work remotely as they believe if they can't keep an eye on their employees things will not get done. But as stated before, when you have a plan and guidelines in place, and your team has the resources they need, the only thing you can do is trust them and know that they are doing their best.
- Keep the communication open. Don't forget to check in with your team and make sure they have what they need to get their work done. And make yourself available, it doesn't mean you have to take calls 24/7 but give them a specific period of time for office hours.
- Focus on goals. The important thing is what is getting accomplished. If the goals are being met, it's not about activity but accomplishment.
- Utilize your community: Keep people motivated, recognize milestones, celebrate birthdays and special occasions. Keep spirits up by trying to connect with people and fostering the community. The online community can also give peers a medium to communicate frustrations, empathize, and share the success.
This is a time to unite your employees while following safety protocols. Remote work can be challenging. Even with the current crisis and preparing for the unexpected, we can continue to effectively meet company goals. As long as your remote workers have the tools they need to perform. It's time to become innovative to get things done while honoring our health needs and protecting our community.