How to Manage Remote Employees
Management of a remote team is a very important issue because companies are more focused on remote work during COVID-19. Both the public and private sectors were forced to adopt the remote working model, and many companies were unprepared for this situation. There are a number of advantages and disadvantages that remote work brings. The biggest advantages are the fact that work can be done from home, the cost advantage that this provides to the employer, and of course, the disappearance of time spent in traffic. Some of its biggest disadvantages are uncertainty, prolonged working hours, and loss of motivation caused by miscommunication.
How Should the Remote Working System Function?
Ensuring Proper Communication
In a virtual environment, differences in views and approaches can be increased. You have to strive to encourage, listen, and respond to different perspectives. Unfortunately, managers tend to stick to the technologies they know best, using tools that aren’t the most effective at communicating remotely.
You should be in frequent and open communication with colleagues, managers, customers, and other stakeholders with whom you collaborate. It is very important that you express yourself more accurately by setting daily and/or weekly information times and by making sure that the other party receives the same conclusions.
If you encourage your employees to have individual virtual video meetings so that they can be visible not just as a team, you also manage to keep communication tight with your team members. Take time to engage in social interactions with your teammates outside of work, as you do when working in the office. If you don’t let the ties weaken with distance, it will help keep motivation and commitment to the team high.
Taking Advantage of the Right Technology
Try using tools that may be in parallel with company policies and security. Using the right communication and collaboration technology with your team helps to successfully establish those relationships with a remote workforce. To work effectively when working remotely, you must also take advantage of constantly evolving collaboration tools and technologies.
Managing Cultural Differences
Failure to recognize the difficulties that may arise from the cultural differences of your remote team can eventually lead to problems completing projects and getting things done.
You have to discover how employees like to get feedback differently from each other. You should try to be as flexible as you can (without allowing team rules to be inconsistent). Some of your employees may prefer feedback via email, while others may want to discuss something with you via FaceTime or Skype call. The important thing is that your distant employee and the work he/she does continues moving in a positive direction.
Instead of trying to mitigate differences, you should develop a mindset that celebrates differences. Diversity makes your team agile and successful. Discover the differences, talk to your team about them, and try to view any differences as opportunities. Learning about each other’s cultures helps strengthen inter-team interaction.