Managing Remote Employees
We’re facing a permanent change in the workplace. Work-from-Home (at least hybrid) is here to stay, and many companies will not be returning to traditional office environments. This new normal creates management challenges for organizations. Especially, helping leaders manage and provide equitable feedback to employees while not directly observing their daily performance. Let’s take a closer look at how you can address these issues.
Make Inclusion Part of Your Culture
When you have part of your team working from home and part in the office, it can be easy to let inclusion slip through the cracks. You maintain camaraderie with the team you see every day, but your remote employees get less attention. Focusing on inclusion should be an ongoing priority.
· Schedule regular time to informally check in with each remote employee.
· Actively encourage input from your remote team on projects and policies.
· Create a “Watercooler” discussion group or chat channel on your collaborative software
· Consider making hybrid meetings (where some are in person and some remote) completely remote, so that everyone has the same experience.
· Showcase all employees on the website and in the headquarters with formal headshots or casual photos submitted by your team.
Schedule Feedback Sessions
Regular communication is the backbone of building remote relationships. I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to schedule regular feedback sessions with your team. Not only should you do one-on-one check-ins (both formal and informal), but you should organize regular group events (virtual and in person) to bring the team together.
Your in-house employees benefit from hearing new information as it happens. However, that can leave your remote employees feeling left out. They may end up hearing news late (often through the grapevine), or not at all.
You need to focus on providing immediate communication and, most importantly, context for decisions and information. What is most important to your team in the office may differ significantly from what your remote employees care about. Providing the context will help everyone see how the decisions were made.
Develop Action Plans
One of the biggest concerns for remote employees is how they will be measured compared to in-house team members. This isn’t an issue to take lightly. It’s human nature to focus on things happening in front of us, so you may reward the employees in the office more than those who are working remotely. This is true even if they have equal performance, or even if the remote employee is performing at a higher level.
For this reason, you need to create equitable action plans, focused on deliverables, in order to compare apples to apples when it comes time for raises or promotions.
The Takeaway for Managers
Managing remote employees will be an on-going challenge. The main takeaway for managers is that it is crucial to focus on inclusion, solicit feedback, be transparent, and balance the attention given to your remote and in-house teams.
Do you want to learn more ways to manage your workforce? Contact Sigred Solutions today.