With so many changes occurring in the workforce over the past several months, most employers have transitioned into the new remote work world. As a manager, you must be proactive in developing a framework for managing your employees effectively under these new, evolving conditions. As your employees acclimate to the “new normal” of remote work, you can take three important steps to ensure your team continues performing as productively as possible:
Make communication a priority.
Strong, two-way communication is essential in every successful work environment; however, it is even more critical for a workplace with remote employees. As you develop your organization’s remote workplace policies, it’s essential to establish a communications structure that includes daily check-ins with your team members. It’s also important to implement technology that allows for easy and fluid communication among employees, such as video conferencing, instant messaging chat functions, and advanced project management systems. Focusing on a strategy that integrates communication and collaboration will keep all your employees engaged in their work without feeling isolated from co-workers and managers in the process.
Set expectations and focus on results.
As you transition your team to remote work, it is important to set expectations for what tasks and projects need to be accomplished – and what results need to be achieved. Because your employees are no longer working together under one roof, having a shared set of expectations will be critical in keeping every person firmly focused on the results of their own performance in achieving common goals. Keep in mind that some of your employees may not thrive under remote work conditions, while others will. Be ready to guide and support those who may need a little extra help getting acclimated.
Understand the importance of flexibility.
By the very nature of a remote workforce during a pandemic, managers must understand that it’s nearly impossible to expect employees to adhere to strict work hours. While it’s completely understandable to set requirements for employees to get their work done and meet deadlines, it’s equally important to give them the freedom to manage their own work schedules without being micromanaged. Allowing for some degree of flexibility will show your team that you trust them to accomplish their work on their own terms.
Remember, effective management of remote teams does not happen overnight. It takes time to establish a routine for your employees that works both for them and your company. By implementing the steps above for your organization, you’ll create a workforce that can thrive under any conditions!
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