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A Guide To Managing Your Newly Remote Workers

Two-way dialogue between managers and employees ensures that communication efforts help, rather than hurt, engagement. Two-way communication provides employees with the information and perspective they need. It also enables them to express and process negative emotions and feel more in control. Use both direct conversations and indirect observations to get visibility into employees’ challenges and concerns. Use every opportunity to make clear to employees that you support and care for them. Beyond the simple daily check-ins, over-communicating is imperative when it comes to the team’s tasks, duties, responsibilities and desired outcomes, which we’ll cover more in a minute.

Actually seeing one another has a surprising impact on how well team members connect and bond on a personal level, which translates directly into better collaboration on a professional level. Management professionals apply their leadership, interpersonal, communication, and decision-making skills to help employees and other managers minimize potential issues. Those who serve in human resource roles are the stewards of an organization’s workforce.

However, managing remote and hybrid teams can get complicated fast. An SHRM study found that it was challenging for 70% of employees to adapt to remote work after the lockdown. Part of the problem is learning how to manage people they barely, if ever, get to see in person.

By entrusting your employees with important projects and involving them in key organizational processes, you show that you value their contributions and can develop a more robust working relationship. Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, organizations around the world are advising workers to telecommute to adhere to social distancing guidelines and limit the spread of disease. One recent survey found that 67 percent of employers are taking measures to allow employees to work from home who don’t normally do so. There are very real professional and personal benefits unlocked by remote work. Identify the benefits you can find with working remotely and help your team members do the same.

No 1: Look Out For Sign Of Distress In Your Employees

These tips will help managers ensure new hires feel included from day one. Managers may be concerned and even frustrated about losing the constant visibility of their employees they once had, but don’t respond by micromanaging. That will only disengage and fatigue already stressed employees. Don’t fixate on perceived performance problems; lean on established performance management systems if need be.

Managing remote employees

That said, technology offers solutions to support your recognition efforts. Relegate recognition and appreciation to the bottom of your «to-do» list while employees work from home. Managing Remote Teams Offering recognition while your team works from home can be challenging. And sending an instant message to your employee doesn’t hold the same weight as face-to-face interaction.

Hundreds of companies and millions of employees use Axero’s intranet software to communicate, collaborate, manage tasks and events, organize content, and develop their company culture. And, further evidence suggests employees crave the flexibility and freedom of remote work. In fact, 37% of technology professionals say they would take a 10% pay cut to work from home, while 46% of companies say telework has reduced attrition. Teleworkers also take fewer sick days and return to work sooner after an illness, all of which contribute positively to the company’s bottom line. Remote team management doesn’t require you to know everything about every aspect of your organization.

Get The Team Together Physically Once In A While

In addition to weekly one-on-ones, it’s critical to bring your entire remote team together virtually at least once a week. You probably already have weekly or daily team meetings, and that shouldn’t change during remote working. Setting expectations seems like a no-brainer, but how you communicate these expectations has a lot to do with how your team will respond and adhere to them. Here are a few tips to set and properly communicate your expectations when you remotely manage a team. Diversity and Inclusion are a part of Cornell University’s heritage. We are a recognized employer and educator valuing AA/EEO, Protected Veterans, and Individuals with Disabilities.

Managing remote employees

Try a tool like TINYpulse which allows employees to send signed or anonymous «job well done» recognitions to anyone else at the company. You can then use this system to reward those who go out of their way to help others and who consistently get great feedback from colleagues. Even before the Covid-19 pandemic, the remote workforce was growing. Yet, when working from home became a necessity rather than a lifestyle choice, setting boundaries between the professional and the personal became harder. When your professional life is on a laptop in the other room, it can be tempting to send that last email or finish a little more of that task.

Collaboration & Teamwork Skills

Your company can take advantage of that, getting the best out of every employee, by giving them some flexibility and measuring performance, not presence. It requires you to keep a close eye on not just the progress of tasks and project goals, but also team members’ emotional well-being and their relationships with one another. Plus, it doesn’t help that you are now supposed to deal with a lot of new virtual tools, communication methods, and remote work policies. Communication is an obvious challenge with managing remote employees, but some of those communication-related challenges aren’t so obvious. Yes, you lose some of those hallway conversations, and quick in-office chats, but it goes deeper than that.

  • And others might even be living in large groups, with part of their close or extended family.
  • When your team is working from an office, it’s easy to check in regularly with the whole group as well as individual team members.
  • Whether you convey that it doesn’t matter or that it is important to loop in your remote team members, the rest of your team willfollow your lead.
  • To learn about our similarities and differences, every new colleague has to do a short presentation about themselves during their first workation.
  • But don’t assume that people know how to operate with virtual communications — or are comfortable in that environment.

Some collaboration happens in scheduled meetings or formal brainstorming sessions, but much of it comes during organic, casual conversations that spring up outside of formal meetings. This kind of informal communication is linked to increased productivity within a group—but it’s the kind of communication that can be harder for remote employees to participate in. I’ve been working with remote teams and hosting virtual training sessions for 15 years.

It will help your team remember the sacrifice their teammate is regularly making and help them empathize more with the distant, remote person. One on ones provide an opportunity to make up for that as well as handle all the little things that build up over the course of a week. With so much to cover, you simply cannot afford to miss one for your remote team members. If you ever forget to update your availability on Skype, MS Teams, Slack, etc, realize that your remote employees have no idea when your door is actually»open.» Remembering what you do learn about them, especially for people you only see a couple of hours a week on calls, can be hard. That’s why we built Lighthouse to help you keep track of those details as you learn them.

Challenges In Managing Remote Teams

«The best method is to ask employees how they want to be managed while working remotely,» Pellman said. «That way, managers can keep a pulse on what each employee needs to be productive while working from home.» When you’re in an office, it’s easy to give a shout-out and recognize the hard work that a team member does. But if your team is scattered around the country, or even operating out of different time zones, it can be difficult to find the appropriate time to do so. However, finding a way to acknowledge a job well done is important.

Managing remote employees

Remote workers are too valuable for managers to overlook their unique needs. Organizational Effectiveness Ensure that you have the right strategy, culture, people, structure and processes in place to achieve your goals. Employee Experience Analyze and improve the experiences across your employee life cycle, so your people and organization can thrive. The applications vary slightly from program to program, but all ask for some personal background information.

And, since they are not tied to a specific location, employers can hire the best candidates from a larger talent pool, regardless of where they live. Building a culture that fosters open, positive friendships among coworkers can help dismantle some of these concerns that plague many remote employees. This becomes more important when you consider that remote workers are becoming a more substantial piece of the workforce year over year. According to SHRM, over 40 percent of organizations offered part-time telecommuting in 2019—up from just five percent in 2018.

Make Meetings Accessible

In addition to giving feedback and guidance to your employees, you should seek their input on how you’re performing. To instill purpose among your employees, provide concrete examples of how their collective efforts advance important organizational objectives. When doing so, employ the principles of the “Commander’s Intent,” a concept that’s detailed in Management Essentials and serves as a means of unifying individuals around a goal. “As a general guideline, leaders often feel they’re communicating enough, whereas their teams often feel they’re getting insufficient communication,” Mayo says in Leadership Principles. Here are a few tips to make sure you and your team don’t feel guilty about the occasional loss of focus.

Once the COVID-19 pandemic took root, primary workspaces shifted to home offices, dining room tables, spare bedrooms, or even closets, according to Owl Labs. The abrupt shift at the onset of the pandemic in early 2020 to a largely homebound, geographically dispersed workforce has been a struggle for many on both sides of the equation. Not everyone has the discipline and intrinsic motivation to buckle down and get work done without direct supervision and the accountability of showing up at the office every day. Work from home arrangements make it tempting to sleep in, slack off and “shirk” at home for some who just aren’t cut out for the situation.

With Dialpad, you can make phone calls, have video meetings, and send instant + SMS/MMS messages, all from a single desktop or mobile app. Signup takes just a few minutes, and you’ll be set up with a virtual business number too. Whether you’re managing a remote team of 10 or an entire company moving to remote or hybrid work, there’s a way to make your home office less lonely—while making sure it’s just as productive. With some roles , it may be more difficult to exercise flexibility. But it doesn’t mean you have to resort to micromanaging your remote workforce. Team camaraderie is important, but so is making time to talk to your employees one-on-one.

When people are heading into the office daily there are clear boundaries between work life and home life. With remote working this boundary is removed, so many people end up working longer hours, which can eventually lead to burnout or diminished productivity. As a manager, it would be a mistake to think that since people already know what they should do in the office, it should be clear to them what is expected when working remotely. Thus, remote work requires different skills from those needed in the typical work arrangement. For instance, remote work calls for a different kind of time management, the ability to follow written procedures, and communicating using only information and telecommunication technologies. This article is for business owners who are looking to successfully manage a remote workforce either temporarily or permanently.

How Managers Can Support Remote Employees

Think about the spaces, the conversations (often unscheduled– see what Steve Jobs called «Collisions”), and the processes typically involved in ideating within a typical office. It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking of your remote team members as mercenaries helping you get things done. If you hire them as employees, treat them like any other employee, not a freelancer/contractor.

With that in mind, the best way to manage remote employees is to trust them. If you find yourself micromanaging, there is something bigger that must be addressed. Communication is a pillar for any type of team management, but for managing a remote team across the globe, it takes on a whole new level of importance. All the important discussions and decisions must take place online and be shared with the right people. The fact is that leading remote teams looks different for each company—it all depends on the culture and remote work approach. If you’ve come this far, you are pretty committed to the idea of being great at managing remote employees.