Managing remote workers can be challenging. It’s hard to get the pulse on how engaged your team is when you only see them briefly over zoom. Instead of worrying or micromanaging, making little changes every day to help your team feel supported and clear on their goals can be impactful. Below are some tips from MP’s HR services team for engaging remote workers. Most of this advice costs nothing—it just requires extra effort to connect with and support your staff.
6 Best Practices for Engaging Remote Workers
- Make small talk with your team: When you’re supervising remote employees, building a personal connection can be challenging. Make a concerted effort to ask how your workers are doing and what’s going on in their lives outside of work. You don’t want to pry, but inviting them to talk for just a few minutes about their interests or what makes them happy outside of their job will go a long way.
- Encourage wellness: One of the best tips for managing remote workers is to make sure you’re supportive of any efforts your team puts towards health and wellness. If possible, let them rearrange their schedules for workouts, doctor’s appointments, and therapy appointments. Allocate a mental health day for everyone and set an example by using yours. Studies show that healthy and happy workers are the most productive, so this makes good business sense.
- Create clear boundaries for the workday: Remote workers have a hard time ending the workday, which can eventually lead to burnout. Help them be their most productive by clearly sharing the expected working hours. Enforce these hours by never sending emails or texting or calling after them (if possible). Celebrate achievements completed during the workday, not late afterhours, or weekend work.
- Check in a little more frequently: The goal is not to micromanage, but to ensure your team feels supported and connected to work. If you’ve never done one-on-ones, consider implementing them. If you do, consider increasing the frequency. Focus on helping your workers prioritize, understand why their projects are impactful to the organization, and making sure they have everything they need to complete their duties. (This is also an excellent time to implement tip one!)
- Clarify methods of communication: Determine the best ways your team can connect with you for these scenarios. Share this information in a place where people can refer back when needed. If employee slip up and do something different, don’t punish them. This is mean to be a first step in aligning expectations and it should feel similar to when you open your office door. Employees will know you’re reachable and ready to talk.
- Calling out sick
- Non-emergency questions or updates
- Delivering work
- Consider MP’s Share and Perform software: Connect your team and improve collaboration with MP’s cutting-edge software. This solution will be a hit with workers as it feels like the social media sites they’re already using. The software also facilitates more organized, transparent performance review processes. Whether your team is only temporarily remote for the pandemic, going permanently remote, or in the office, you can help them reach new heights in their work with goal-setting tools, and gamification options for more fun in everyday tasks.
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