Increasingly I am working with clients who have some of their teams working remotely. Below I share with you 5 practices I advocate to effectively manage remote employees.
Select your remote workers carefully
When recruiting remote workers or considering who on your team may be able to work remotely, you have to consider more than just the requirements and skills for the job. You need to be sure to hire someone who is self-motivated, wants to work remotely, and has the skills to be successful.
Build a culture of trust and accountability
In order to build strong working relationships, be sure to include opportunities for social bonding with remote team members such as using video based tools, for example Zoom or Skype, to spark impromptu interactions and spending time each week to nurture relationships by making time for small talk as you would do in the office. Setting clear expectations for remote workers is also key – they should know exactly what they need to deliver to be successful in their role.
Focus on results
Rather than the hours they are physically in the office, remote workers need to be measured based on their productivity. Are they meeting their goals and delivering the desired results you’ve agreed upon? It is important to recognise remote workers’ contributions so they don’t feel like they are under appreciated and so that others in the office know they are contributing to the team.
Establish good communication
Regular check ins are crucial for successful remote employees. As the manager, you should be proactive in setting up a communication rhythm that works for your team. Have daily catch ups and weekly team meetings as well as using collaboration tools to stay in touch throughout the day.
Implement the right tools & systems
Just like the rest of your employees, your remote workers need to have the right tools and systems in place to be successful. Having some kind of video conferencing tool that allows you to have face time with remote team members can go a long way to establishing more personal relationships and feeling more connected with the team. A chat platform like Skype or Google can help you keep the lines of informal communication open with remote team members throughout the day.