How To Manage A Remote Workforce

A remote workforce is any workforce that does not gather in a central location. Businesses that implement remote work can access talent pools from around the world. Current health and safety concerns mean many businesses are introducing remote work for the first time.

The proactive management of a remote workforce can be demanding. It requires completely new approaches to many common issues. Here are some ways you can improve efficiency and morale among your remote team, even if you are new to leading remote personnel:

1. Have a Daily Check-In

For any team to be successful, everyone must understand what “the win” looks like. Goals can easily become unclear when remote work reduces collaboration between employees. A daily, face to face video check-in will ensure everyone follows the same agenda.

2. Leverage Technology

Understand what communication resources are at your disposal and use them well. Whether it’s email, Slack, or Zoom, make sure everyone understands the toolkit and where to look for key updates. This can also make the isolation of working at home easier to deal with.

3. Manage Expectations

Remember, working remotely is a skill that takes time to cultivate. No one is born with the ability to achieve maximum productivity from home. Help team members figure out what their goals should be and create realistic expectations – both for them and for yourself.

4. Shift from Activity to Outcomes

Micromanaging a team is one of the worst habits any leader can fall into. When it comes to remote work, however, it truly is impossible. Instead of focusing on metrics like hours worked, encourage the team to focus on outcomes with broader overall timelines.

5. Build a Community Spirit

Everyone on your team is facing higher levels of stress. Try to set a positive tone for all interactions and be alert to how your messages could be perceived, especially by email. Consider implementing a “virtual social hour” on Friday afternoons so team members can engage in much needed social bonding.

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