Our remote working experts offer their advice on how to best manage a remote team.
As organisations increase mobile and remote working, there is a shift in workplace behaviour, for example changes that influence the way we commute, or don’t, to work. A challenge for many managers and leaders is striking the balance between offering support to people working remotely and giving people the space and flexibility they need to complete their jobs.
Whatever the cause, a large-scale shift to a work-from-home culture brings its own set of challenges. If you are a manager or leader that is overseeing teams that are working remotely, you may want to put into practice measures that help maximise the effectiveness of your teams, whilst ensuring you are staying connected and engaged in a positive way.
Engage your remote colleagues
Engage your team in meaningful ways that encourages them to work to the best of their ability. Think about how you can reach out in ways that will benefit them; some might love online chat, whilst others may prefer an email or video call. Imagine you’re walking into your office every day, you would most likely greet your team in person, so that shouldn’t change when working remotely.
Teach your team to work from home, it’s not a natural skill
For many, working from home offers some great perks, perhaps the most obvious is there being no need to commute, saving both time and cost. People are also often afforded more flexibility around schedules, allowing them to fit in personal commitments a little more easily. However, working from home also requires skills and boundaries that don’t always come naturally to everyone. Encourage your team to share ways they have found to make home-working suitable for them. Share best-practice articles, blogs and tips to help your team think about how they can stay healthy and be productive.
Burnout can still be a challenge when working from home, as it can be difficult to feel like there is a defined end to the working day, especially without a commute. Help your team establish boundaries and avoid working themselves into the ground.
Understand that adjustment takes time
Talk to your team to understand what’s working for them and what’s not working so well. Would they benefit from some changes to their weekly meeting schedule? Would they benefit from an informal space to catch up with colleagues on a social level? How can they easily set up impromptu meetings?
Ensure they have the tools they need to work
Check in with your team to see if they have a suitable set up to enable them to be productive, from a comfortable desk and chair to a quality headset to make and answer calls. If your business can offer support to people to help cover the cost of equipment, then make sure your team is aware. Providing essential kit is a great way to show your commitment to a work-from-home workforce.
How are you keeping your team connected while they work from home? Share your ideas with us on Twitter or LinkedIn.
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