Stay Safe, Stay Home and Managing Remote Workers

By Cliff

Managing remote teams of employees or contractors relies on excellent relationship management. Here are six tips for working remotely yourself, while managing remote teams.

The coronavirus pandemic has resulted in an enforced government lockdown and nationwide self-isolation and social distancing. Many employers are looking for best online practices for how to manage a team remotely.

Communication must be a priority

Employee engagement ideas for remote workers almost always rely on communication. It is a cornerstone for managing people well remotely.

Remote working from home can leave employees feeling left out. Consider scheduling a daily check-in to see how your team are doing. If they are new to working from home, sympathetically make suggestions on how to work remotely in the most effective way.

Be sure to communicate company news as it presents itself, and make time to listen to any of your employees’ concerns. The pandemic is rapidly changing people’s lives, and many employees feel overwhelmed and anxious. Remind them that they are not alone and look out for signs of workplace stress, as it can lead to burnout.

Set clear expectations for how you expect employees to work remotely

Openly communicate your expectations to employees who now must work from home. If your workforce understands your expectations, they will be more motivated to meet them. If you want employees to be online at specific times of the day, or to submit daily reports, make this clear to them.

Managing remote workers in family households

Be mindful that many employees live in family households and may not have the ideal video or teleconferencing environments. With schools closed due to the pandemic, be understanding with  employees who have children. As part of your remote employee relationship management, you might choose to offer them paid time off for childcare and other responsibilities which have come about because of this pandemic.

Recognise good work

Recognising and rewarding good work by remote workers is vital to team management. Employee recognition incentivises ongoing productivity from your employees. It can take many forms: for example, sending out a team- or organisation-wide email outlining what a remote worker did and why their work was exceptional. A personal email saying thank you also goes a long way when people are working from home.

Work–life balance within remote teams

Not having a healthy work–life balance is likely to be common in employees who are new to working from home. There are many reasons why this can cause stress and, eventually, burnout. For example:

  • They might have no separation between their workspace and personal space.
  • They might feel they need to be available to work outside their usual working hours.

Suggest to your staff that they work their normal hours, then close their computer at the end of the day.

Remote team engagement

Remote working employees tend to be more engaged when they feel part of a team. It can be more difficult to achieve this when the change is sudden and unexpected – as we are experiencing in the COVID-19 pandemic.

When you are managing remote working teams, you must help them to understand that they are all working together towards a common goal but they cannot see each other in person like they used to.

Remind them that you and their colleagues are still available to help them meet deadlines and overcome challenges while they are working from home.

We hope you find this blog useful at this difficult time. In the meantime, if you have insurance-related concerns or requirements, please contact us. We are providing the same high-quality personal service remotely until the lockdown ends

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