For many managers, overseeing a remote workforce is still relatively new. Finding ways to support your work from home team isn’t easy, particularly since the paradigm can quickly leave employees feeling disconnected from their boss and each other.
Luckily, there are things you can do to bolster relationships, enhance morale, and promote productivity through secure connections. If you don’t know where to begin, here are some options that can help.
Focus on Communication
With a remote team, communication can’t be an afterthought. Many of the organic opportunities for conversations that exist in a traditional workplace aren’t there when your employees are telecommuting. As a result, you need to be more intentional about initiating dialogs and staying in touch.
Ideally, you want to embrace several communication channels. Often, email is a company norm, but it isn’t particularly efficient. Emergency messages may get buried by incoming emails, causing them to be missed. Additionally, delays in replies hinder the flow of ideas, especially when problem-solving or thinking creatively.
Implement communication solutions for specific scenarios. For example, collaboration software with messaging capabilities can be great for conversations, and text messages may be ideal for altering others about emergencies. Video calls can be great for lengthier discussions and fostering connections.
Use different approaches depending on the goal of the discussions. Additionally, put employee check-ins on your calendar, ensuring you reach out often enough to provide support and keep the relationships healthy.
A new hire working from home may not have the opportunity to meet their colleagues in person, at least for the foreseeable future. If you want to make sure they can integrate into the team, encourage your employees to take turns acting as a mentor.
For example, when the new hire needs to learn a new system, have the employee who is the most adept at it be their guide. Then, when the next skill area becomes relevant, have a different team member step into that role.
This allows the new hire to get to know everyone over time. Plus, it can give your existing team a chance to develop leadership skills and support the new employee.
Assign Work to Pairs
While many tasks can be completed by individuals when you are trying to keep a new hire connected to the team, consider using the buddy system. By giving assignments to two team members instead of one, you are promoting collaboration.
Since they have to work together, they’ll be in contact more frequently. This may help them develop a bond in reasonably short order, making it easier for the new hire to fully integrate while ensuring they have a chance to get to know their colleagues.
Ultimately, all of the tips above can make it easier to forge new connections and maintain old ones. If you’d like to learn more about how you can manage a work from home team more effectively, the skilled staff at TempStaff wants to hear from you. Contact us today and see how our remote workforce management expertise can benefit you.