Managing a small business has never been easy. And now, the COVID-19 pandemic has turned many businesses upside down.
If you’re one of the fortunate businesses that have managed to stay open, you’re still facing major changes. One of the biggest challenges you may be dealing with is managing employees who are now working from home.
Thousands of offices worldwide now sit empty to allow for social distancing. Those who managed those offices are forced to manage a completely different type of workforce.
If this is what you’re going through right now, don’t worry. We’ve written you a comprehensive guide on the dos and don’ts of managing remote employees.
Read this guide and follow these tips to get through this difficult time.
What Not to Do When Managing Remote Employees
First, let’s stop the management techniques you may be doing wrong. Here’s what not to do when managing remote workers.
Don’t Be Vague
You’re not around anymore to make sure your employees are doing their job. Without your presence, your employees can only rely on your instructions. If your instructions aren’t clear, the results will be inconsistent at best.
Base your instructions on measurable results. That way, your employees know exactly what quotas to meet and how long they have to complete them. Plus, you can measure their results for yourself to make sure the work’s getting done
Don’t Silence Your Phone
At least 54% of your remote workers are feeling very disconnected right now. They feel far away from you and their coworkers.
They no longer feel like a team. This leads to loneliness, lack of purpose in their work, low mood, and poor motivation.
One way to prevent this is by making sure you keep communication lines open. Never silence your phone (at least during business hours).
And always respond to messages your employees send you. Even if you’re busy, take a moment to tell them you’ll be with them in a couple of minutes. This lets them know you’re still there for them.
How to Manage Remote Workers Effectively
Now, let’s look at the correct way to manage your remote employees. Keep them happy, motivated, and productive with these techniques.
Meet Online Daily
Aside from being there when employees contact you, you should also be contacting them daily. Meet with your team online every day. This face-to-face connection with your workforce is essential for them to feel connected as a team.
If your workforce is too big for this to be practical, split it into daily department meetings instead. You meet with your department heads, and they meet with their subordinates.
Schedule One-on-One Meetings
You also need to connect with each employee individually. Schedule one-on-one online meetings with every single employee in your workforce. Try to meet with each of them at least once per month so they know you’re still thinking about them.
This also ensures that you are, in fact, still thinking about them. Remote work can be a disconnecting experience for you as well.
Use your one-on-one meetings to encourage your remote workers by telling them what they’ve done a great job on. Then, coach them on how they can improve. This type of connection is the best way to motivate remote workers and keep their mood up during these strange and challenging times.
Managing Employees Who Work Remotely
No matter what, acclimating to a remote business model isn’t going to be easy. But it will get easier.
Start by using these techniques when managing employees who work remotely. Soon, this will become routine and feel completely normal.
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