The keys to remote management: trust, motivation and flexibility
Remote working has become a well-established part of our society in recent years. This new reality offers many benefits to employers and employees, but it also brings its own challenges.
Here are some tips to help you better manage your remote team.
Did you know that, even when working from home, the employer has the right to monitor the work of its employees? However, your employees will feel more appreciated if you show them your trust. To do this, make sure your expectations are clear and understood by your team. Regular communication is essential to ensure cohesion and to maintain team spirit. Educate your staff on the appropriate means of communication: an email is appropriate for a question that does not require an immediate response, while a phone call is better for an emergency. You will need to adapt which means of communication is best for each employee. MPO Solutions can help you with this.
Schedule a daily, or weekly as needed, meeting to guide your employees in the right direction and give them the autonomy they need to organize their workday to achieve the goals you have set for them. Be available if they need your help. An approachable manager makes it easier for a team to achieve the desired output on different projects. They need to know that you are willing to support them and that you trust their judgment. Everyone must understand that their full participation is essential to achieving the objectives and is greatly appreciated. That being said, be sensitive to the needs and abilities of each individual. You will quickly realize that each employee is different and that each person’s needs for autonomy, follow-up and feedback are different. You will need to adapt to each personality style.
Be sure to schedule one-on-one meetings with your staff. Take time to check in. If you were in the office, you might have a casual chat in the lobby or a personal discussion in the cafeteria. Try to replicate these moments of interaction, without forcing them, as this will help you maintain the relationships you have established with your employees. Listen carefully to ensure their well-being and to show them that their requests are heard and taken seriously.
Providing the right work tools and making information easily accessible are also good ways to build confidence in your team. Make sure everyone has the resources they need to accomplish their tasks, such as access to specific software or a shared file. Important information should be clearly identified and available to everyone. Set up a way to contact technical support to quickly resolve any problems that may arise. Give your employees all the tools they need to succeed in their job.
Some managers often fear that their employees will lose their motivation. Since motivation is essential to the company’s success, it is important to maintain it. According to the HEC Montréal, each individual’s motivation is intrinsic, but it is possible to stimulate it. Valuing the contribution of each employee by giving regular positive feedback is a good way to keep motivation high. Whether it’s an email about the week’s successes, a one-on-one meeting to thank an employee for his or her efforts on a project, or a team meeting to highlight the achievement of objectives, it’s essential to celebrate successes and the people who made them possible. Recognizing your staff for their work will show them that they are important to the company and that they are recognized.
Boosting your team’s sense of belonging also has an impact on motivation. Take the time to introduce your new employees in an open-camera meeting so everyone can associate a name with a face. Build on the skills of your staff and hand off your less experienced employees to your experts for guidance. Encourage teamwork, allowing your workforce to meet remotely to work as if they were in the office. Plan a chat break during the day, just like when your employees used to gather around the coffee machine. Why not organize a special Friday afternoon activity? This can be as simple as asking everyone to wear something themed, organizing an outing to an escape game facility if your employees are in the same city, etc. You can also offer a gift package for work at home, for example a headset, a pen, a mug or a t-shirt with your company’s logo can remind your employees that their contribution is important.
In the office, work hours are often scheduled in advance. It can be nice for your telecommuting employees to get some flexibility, such as moving lunchtime around or having the opportunity to take an afternoon break to go for a walk and get some fresh air.
Also, set aside a few minutes before or after meetings to allow people to talk informally with each other as they did in the office. Make room for laughter to help your team relax. These spontaneous moments that happen in person may seem harder to copy online, but they are just as important. Most importantly, it’s important to evaluate your team’s performance based on results, not hours worked. The success of your business depends on satisfying your customers, meeting deadlines and generating revenue. Screen time is not necessarily a measure of success.
At Ngenio, we understand that remote work has become an integral part of society. While this model took hold a little too early with the pandemic, we now know that it has taken deep root. We need to adapt to it quickly and make it work for everyone. Many companies are now seeing the major gains that remote work can bring them. Embrace this wave of change, build strong teams and innovative companies. Trust your people to make your business grow.