Over the last year and a half, we have seen a dynamic shift in how many companies adapted to working under Covid-19, with many employees forced to work remotely. While many companies experienced the change for the first time, some were already practicing this kind of work exercise with a few departments.
While many employees enjoy the convenience of working remotely in the comfort of their homes, employers have a few valid concerns about how to best help their employees stay productive. Working remotely certainly has a few challenges, and it is the employer’s responsibility to ensure they provide adequate equipment, communication, and support to keep workers engaged. Here are a few practical tips for managing your remote employees.
Pick Up Signs of Distress
One of the most significant challenges employees face when working remotely is overthinking and having an emotional rollercoaster caused by uncertainty, especially during a pandemic like Covid-19. Managers can adopt many ways to keep employees assured that they are cared for and supported.
Use both indirect observations and direct conversations; that way, you can pick up what concerns and challenges your employees. The organization is also responsible for training and equipping managers with the right tools to deal with sensitive employee issues.
Equip Your Employees
Although employees are working remotely, it doesn’t mean that expectations to do the job are lower. Instead, managers should ensure that employees are well equipped to continue doing a sterling job. Sometimes the job requires more than a laptop or cellphone. The introduction of working remotely means less contact or communication with many departments, which means frequent virtual meetings and reporting for many employees.
For a near-perfect and professional virtual meeting, the organization must ensure sufficient internet access and cameras for optimum visibility. However, it is still the employee’s responsibility to remain professional and look after the company’s equipment.
One of the most significant communication barriers between managers and employees is a lack of knowledge and understanding, especially when introduced changes. To improve communication, managers must promote dialogue with employees and explain organizational changes. With perspective and experience, employees are more likely to drive the changes to success. Many things are changing, and both managers and employees are going through the most on a personal level, so keeping a two-way communication channel open paints an authentic picture while working remotely.
Reinforce Organizational Values
Psychologists have always encouraged organizations to include employees in the structure of their core values and treat them as critical stakeholders. This is as true when employees are working remotely than ever. One of the biggest motivation boosters for employees is knowing that the organization is looking out for them in the long haul.
As part of the company values, employees need to be assured a great future and lives with the organization while always emphasizing the importance of ethical conduct, especially when working remotely. Give employees a healthy reminder on unethical reporting channels, with transparent actions to promote work well-being.