A wonderful article by Roberta Matuson contributor at Forbes.com
It’s the year 2020, and there are still leaders who’ve never managed a remote workforce—until now. As the coronavirus spreads, the number of companies asking employees to work from home is unprecedented.
Here are some tips to keep remote employees engaged and productive during these tumultuous times.
- Give people control. Be sure those who are working from home have the equipment and tools needed to be productive.
- Don’t make assumptions. Don’t assume because you know how to use online video conferencing tools like Zoom, that everyone else in the office knows how to use these tools – show people. Record a “how too webinar”, so people have a reference point.
- Be flexible. The workers you’re sending home have lives that may not be conducive to working remotely. They might have kids who are not at school, or a spouse who works remotely. Be less concerned about the hours they work and more concerned about the results.
- Check-in with your people regularly. Pick up the phone and ask your team members how they’re doing and if there is anything you can do to help. Extend deadlines, if doing so will lessen the stress they’re feeling trying to balance your needs and that of their family.
- Lead with transparency. No doubt, you’ll be asked questions that you either don’t know the answer to or are unable to answer. People expect leaders to lead with openness and not withhold information that could help further understanding of the issue. It’s okay to say, “I don’t know” or “I’m waiting for an update on that ”
- Reassure employees. Right now, it feels like the sky is falling, but this too shall pass. Your employees are counting on you for leadership and direction. Help them to focus on controlling the controllables.
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