Remote working is part of our culture. In fact, it’s estimated that half of the US workforce will be working remotely by 2020. Remote working has become a way of life and offers both business owners and employees flexibility and freedom.
Today’s workers want and expect to manage a healthy work-life balance, and remote working is an excellent way of encouraging employees to achieve that goal.
Business owners, however small their company, need to be engaged with their remote workers to ensure they’re motivated, productive and feel valued.
Here are three ways you can better engage with your remote employees.
1. Communicate and Engage.
Communicating regularly is a crucial component of any manager-employee relationship, and this couldn’t be truer of remote workers.
This means having the right technology is vital. For instance, a cloud-based call system that allows for call routing, call recording, call waiting, video calls, group conferences, etc., will undoubtedly help your remote workforce stay better engaged and aware of your company’s short- and long-term goals.
Remote workers like to work independently; however, it’s just as vital for them to be able to contact you. Having a cloud-based system can facilitate that. It’s a simple and cost-effective means of equipping your remote workers with the right tools to do their jobs — especially if your remote workers spend a lot of time on the phone to customers and suppliers.
By having such a phone system, you’re building a collaborative work culture for your remote workforce. Group calls provide a platform for you and your team to brainstorm ideas, communicate difficulties with customers and suppliers, and help remote workers feel like they’re a genuine part of your company.
Although technology plays no small part in facilitating that engagement, there are other equally important aspects to managing remote teams. They might be outside of your physical office, but they don’t have to feel that way.
2. Get to Know Them.
Find out what motivates your remote-working employees. Remember, just because someone isn’t working ‘in-house,’ they still need public, individual and financial recognition for their work. If you’re running a small operation, it’s easier to get to know your individual team members. It’s also simpler to find out when and how they best work. Are they more productive in the mornings? What are their strengths? Support your remote workforce and offer them recognition for their work.
3. Be Organized.
Using regular email communications to stay in touch with people is an excellent starting point. But don’t use it to hide. Give workers a context and a framework within which they can work. It’ll motivate them, and they’ll be more productive. Remote workers like to plan their days just as much as office workers do, and they will be more productive if you’re present and engaged with them on a more meaningful level, rather than just throwing tasks at them.
4. Staying Ahead.
Investing in a high-quality cloud-based phone system will make the lives of your remote workers easier. They can stay connected, perform tasks more productively, and keep your customers happy. However, it’s essential not to forget that remote workers need a shared purpose just as much as office workers. Using technology and your personal communication skills will go a long way towards creating a “we-style” workplace culture that will pay dividends.