Published November 24, 2020
Now more than ever, offices are shifting to a digital workplace and allowing employees to work from home full-time. According to Review 42, 18% of employees work remotely full-time, and 55% work remotely at least once per week as of 2020.
Employers are new to this, and it can be difficult to manage and engage our employees when they’re not in the office with you. Luckily, we’ve put together a few tips for you on how to engage remote employees.
1. Give Clearly Defined Tasks
It can be difficult to know who exactly is working on which tasks when everyone is in different locations. As a manager, it’s important to give your employees clearly defined tasks, while still encouraging collaboration. No one wants to sit at home wondering what they should be doing on any given day.
2. Communicate Consistently
When it comes to working remotely, communication is still something that teams are learning on the fly. Obviously, you don’t have the ability to walk over to someone’s desk for a quick chat. When people aren’t around each other, there are more opportunities for miscommunication.
Consistent communication is one of the essential keys to successful remote offices, but it’s also one of the hardest parts to get right. Communicating consistently helps ensure that each employee is in the loop in regards to current and future goals, as well as what has already been accomplished.
We recommend finding which communication platform works best for your employees, and adapting to their preferences.
3. Check In Frequently
In this case, “check in” doesn’t mean “nag your employees about their productivity”. Take the time to check in on them personally. It’s important to remember that you’re not just managing employees; you’re managing people.
According to that same study from Review 42, 19% of remote employees report loneliness as their biggest challenge. Set aside time for each employee once or twice per month to have a quick chat about how they’re doing, and how you can help them. Be prepared to listen and offer advice when needed, but the most important thing is that your employees feel like they are heard.
A quick 15 minute chat can go a long way towards someone’s mental wellbeing, especially when their contact with other human beings is limited. And a happy employee is a productive employee!
4. Give Recognition
When your employees are doing well, It’s crucial to let them know (especially when working remotely). Along with simply writing to them, go an extra step further and call out their accomplishments in your weekly staff meetings. Who doesn’t like the feeling of being recognized and appreciated for an accomplishment, even if it’s small? It’s encouraging for the employee and gives them an incentive to continue their great work.
5. Be Open to Feedback
Let’s face it, we’re all learning as we go when it comes to managing and engaging remote teams. Each team is different and presents different needs and challenges. As a manager, it’s your responsibility to listen to your employees when they let you know that something isn’t working for them. Be reasonable with each individual’s situation, and work to find a solution that works for them and the team. Simply put: if something isn’t working, don’t force it!
We hope these tips help your team continue to thrive while working remotely. If you need help setting goals, check out this post about creating better goals for your business.