BPHR’s Director Lisa Salcido, SPHR, SHRM-SCP provides answers to your pressing HR questions.
Question: How can leaders successfully manage remote work?
Answer: Rapid workplace shutdowns due to the COVID-19 pandemic pushed organizations to convert to remote work. To keep workers safe and healthy, telework will continue to be necessary for continued business operations. Managers accustomed to overseeing employees onsite may be wondering about productivity, communication, and best practices for managing employees that are working from home.
It has never been easier to work remotely and there are many benefits such as cutting out commuting costs, increased productivity, better home/life balance and higher job satisfaction.
Managing people is challenging whether you share a physical location or not. Do not assume just because you cannot see someone, that they are not being productive. Give your workers the benefit of the doubt and support their professional development during this transition. Managing virtually doesn’t have to be harder than managing teams in general if you follow some practical steps:
Set expectations up front
If working from home is unchartered territory for your organization, expect a period of adjustment. Implement remote work policies that clearly communicate how the company envisions telework. Assist your employees with the shift to remote work with some guidelines around organizing their schedule, keeping in touch and technical protocols.
Ensure employees understand their roles and responsibilities
This is an ideal time to update your job descriptions to define essential job duties. Review the key components and expectations of each position, and evaluate individual skills for remote work, such as self-direction and time management. Adjust your management style around how you interact, how you provide mentoring and guidance, and how you measure deliverables.
Stay in touch
Set up multiple channel touch points such as instant message and video conferencing. Use social platforms to keep your staff engaged and informed. The constant news surrounding the pandemic could be affecting mental health issues so be available to provide emotional support.
Great employees can be great, and successful leaders can be successful, regardless of where they work!
Have a question for Lisa? Email her directly.
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DISCLAIMER: The material presented on this page is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or legal opinion.