You may have heard the phrase tossed around in casual conversation, “I’m working remotely now!”
With the ability to stay connected to the whole wide world regardless of where one is, working remotely has been on the rise recently. And why wouldn’t it be? With the option to work at any hour of the day and any place, a more significant number of people are choosing this new, convenient style of earning.
But don’t think that remote working benefits only workers! With the advent of remote working, more and more companies are opting to hire remote workers. Hiring managers are no longer limited to local talent pools and can hire from a variety of locations and backgrounds to bring new ideas and fresh outlooks to their teams.
HR professionals also have an easier hiring process with interviews that can be done as easily and quickly as skyping potential employees. Digital profiles allow you to gather info about previous work experiences and you can even run background checks and send offer letters automatically. First-time business owners — learn how to avoid mistakes when hiring.
However, you can’t be done after the hiring process. It takes productivity and excellent leadership skills to run a company. In this article, we bring you tips from six remote workers to help you increase your workforce’s productivity. These tips are from workers who have worked both remote and regular jobs. Therefore, they can provide you an insight into doing remote employment work while understanding the differences between remote and regular jobs.
- Kara Manatt, SVP, Intelligence Solutions & Strategy at Magna Global
We understand that running a company is a tough job and you will always be strapped for time. However, you shouldn't put off engaging with your remote workers on a regular basis over some kind of communication medium.
Hold video conferences instead of phone conferences. In-person meetings are even better. But we do understand that it isn’t always possible. Remember that face-to-face interaction, either one-on-one or in a group, will be more effective and engaging than over a phone.
One’s body language conveys much more than a voice does. You’ll know if your remote workers are enjoying working with you or if they have any requests to be accommodated from their body language. You can schedule these meetings either weekly or monthly. This will also make your employees feel included and take their work seriously besides evoking a sense of responsibility.
“Trust your employees”
- Deborah Barta. Senior Vice President - Innovation, Intrapreneurship, Startups
You might be hesitant to hire a remote workforce thinking there won’t be any certainty of getting the job done with as much efficiency as you get through the traditional ways. Or perhaps you worry that tasks won’t get completed on time.
Build a foundation of trust by laying down some ground rules that your remotes workers have to follow like responding to messages from work within 6 hours, or setting communication during certain hours based on their local times to make sure are reachable when you need them. Set due dates and quality checks for all the tasks you assign and establish a system of continuous performance.Rules leave fewer grounds for your employees to go astray, and your remote employee will know the rules when they sign up for the job. You will be able to expect minimum accountability from them, thus reducing the need for constant oversight.
And when your employees realize you don’t hover over them as a boss, they’ll be willing to follow your rules and get the jobs done with more dedication. Therefore make ways so you can trust them and they can like you back.
“Convey your expectations”
- Jeff Brecker. Senior Vice President, Managing Director at R/GA
The definition of “efficient” and “good” is different for different people. As a result, there can be instances when your employee’s good job doesn’t resonate with your expectations. This is why it is essential for you to clearly convey your idea of quality work to your remote working employees.
Mention precisely what you want and when you want a particular job done. Show them examples of good work and if their work doesn't meet your expectations, ask them to make necessary changes to it and provide the resources or guidance needed.
“Goals should be your priority”
- Md Arannyk Monon. WordPress Developer | Blog Writer at Shortlist.io
State how and when you want your work done and leave the rest to them. Follow up with them frequently, especially when it comes close to the deadline. There might be instances when your remote worker finishes the given job within an hour or two before the deadline. In these cases, focus on the quality of the work instead of when the work was done and how long it took.
If the outcome isn’t satisfactory wait for the employee to share with you the reason why the job was rushed and consider giving a second opportunity or extending the deadline based on the situation.
“Make Technology your Friend”
- David Loiselle. VP of Talent and Human Resources at Numerator
Establishing communal feelings among your workers is essential. More so if they are remote workers because working remotely can make them feel secluded. Instead, try and build a community through technology as far as possible to engage your workers so that they stay connected to each other and develop bonds with you and their co-workers.Celebrate special occasions like on achieving milestones or the workers’ birthdays as an opportunity to bring them together and give them a sense of regular office going. Remember, it is vital for your remote employees to feel important too.
– Andrea Gilman. SVP, Product Management, New Payments and Commercial Products at Mastercard
Multitasking can be a time waster as you’ll need to switch from one task to another and may require a constant reminder of what to do. Plus multitasking can take a toll on productivity too. Encourage yourself and your employees to concentrate only on their job when they’re working.
Messaging back and forth beside trying to get the job done can hinder your productivity. This reaches a peak when the weekend is around the corner as people try to avoid working during this period. Therefore communicate to whoever you need to, but early during the day.
This can be difficult, especially if you’re working with remote workers in different time zones. The best way to complete your tasks would be to focus on the most critical and time-consuming tasks first. Short tasks can be achieved quickly and usually don’t require intense concentration.
It’s important to be smart and apply tactics to be able to handle remote employees. At the same time, try to accommodate their needs and pleas. Congratulate them from time to time, invest time and energy in building bonds with them, and approach success together!