As companies grow and expand in efforts to achieve success, growth within the workforce is unavoidable. Sometimes companies may find it necessary complete work in other locations, requiring satellite offices or creating teams that need to work from camps. Managing these teams from a distance can pose a challenge to leaders who are unable to be on site at all times. So how do you keep members of your crew on task and accountable? Let's cover a few of the key approaches to effectively keep everyone in check, on point and in line with what's required to reach your project's success.
We're fortunate to live in a digital age where we're inundated with a number of tools for worldwide communication. Though some are more effective than others, it's important to know what methods will be most applicable to your teams in order to keep them on task and in alignment with your company's culture. In addition to the most obvious veins of communication, utilizing more sophisticated tools like video-conferencing can provide managers with a useful way to speak "face-to-face" with remote teams both near and far. Creating regular, structured times for such meetings enables teams to connect more personally & more frequently. Maintaining that crucial personal connection contributes to building trust with employees who you may not see everyday in the office, but are equally essential in the success of your company.
BECOME A COMPANY EVANGELIST
In any role, regardless of location, positivity can be infectious. Employees who are lead by managers that promote a positive frame of mind, in both their leadership and communication style, often thrive. For the remote worker, day-to-day contact with management is often limited, so maintaining a positive tone and energy when giving direction is crucial. In lieu f face-to-face interaction, your energetic, positive feedback can help keep them motivated to maintain the standards that have been put forth. This also helps to keep your remote teams connected to the company's culture by being it's biggest fan with a proactive, pro-company attitude that will spread to over the phone and through email.
PROVIDE ACTIONABLE FEEDBACK
Remote employees, just like your in-house teams, require constructive feedback in order to maintain the level of excellence that's consistent with your company's expectations. Hosting regular meetings, whether by phone or video-conferencing, can help you stay in the loop with the needs of your staff and provide them with direct responses. But avoid wasting your employees' time by simply glossing over key issues or being too vague in your responses. Show them that you're really listening; work to understand staff concerns, remaining flexible to their reactions and open to their contributions. Be ready to offer team members specific, actionable feedback that they can apply to their concerns. Go further than just asking, "How's it going?" by inquiring about the specifics about any challenges or successes they've faced in their tasks.
Without daily in-person supervision, working in a remote environment can sometimes feel like you're on a ship without a captain. Become that important leader, by taking the time and making the effort to show your remote employees that they're contribution is not just mandatory, but valued. This small change can help them feel more like a key member of the team, even when they're miles away.