10 Ways You Should Manage and Engage Remote Employees For Maximum Impact

Working with remote employees can be an incredible way to save on overhead costs, equipment, time, and so much more. It’s one of the most viable and smart solutions for 2020 and beyond – but you can’t simply hire the remote workers and expect them to get on with it like worker bees. You need to make sure you’re managing the remote team properly, and that you’re keeping them engaged for maximum impact.

Below, you’ll find 10 ways you should manage and engage your employees for maximum impact:

  1. Offer A Variety Of Tools To Keep Everybody In The Loop

Start by making sure you offer a variety of cloud based project management tools so that everybody can stay in the loop without issues. You should host web meetings, use collaboration tools, and go the extra mile to make sure everybody is on the same page.

  1. Address Feelings of Isolation

One of the biggest issues when it comes to keeping your remote team engaged is the fact that many of them can end up feeling isolated. Conversations and meeting by video can help slightly, but that won’t be the end of it. There’s nothing worse than feeling isolated and disconnected – especially when a little can go a long way when it comes to work.

It might not seem like something that is your responsibility, but if you care about your remote workers, you should care about their mental health. You must address remote worker’s social needs to keep them from feeling too lonely.

Provide a combination of work and fun by having occasional team meetings in person. Keeping people connected online, day to day is important, but there’s nothing quite like bringing them together in person!

  1. Support Self Management

Unless a person is extremely focused and organized, it can be nigh on impossible for them to get anything done with the sheer number of distractions in and around the house.

It’s entirely different than having to work alongside co-workers who are also working.

Environment matters when it comes to productivity – it matters more than most realize, until they try to start working in their home environment and realize how taxing it is. Offering training in time management and prioritization can be a huge help, and shows you care about your remote team’s mental health as well as giving them a hand with their workload.

Managers must then support employees in order to put what they have learned into practice. Don’t just put them on the course and then leave them to their own devices. This sort of training and support can be invaluable if you want to ensure maximum impact with your remote workers!

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  1. Come Up With New Ways To Measure The Productivity Of Your Team

Many people are motivated when they feel confident that they are doing a good job, but it is much harder to gain feedback when you are working remotely, and therefore much harder to get motivated.

The issue here is that it can be difficult to measure ‘good’ for remote workers. A lot of standard productivity measures include physical presence, such as coming to work on time and being responsive to in person requests. Non face-time measures of productivity, such as the percentage of tasks completed on time and increases in productivity can be a help when measuring productivity of your remote team. Doing this will be absolutely essential to morale and reassuring your team that they are doing a good job. It’ll also give you insight on how to improve in the long term.

  1. Build A Rapport With Your Remote Team

Building a genuine rapport with your remote team can work wonders for productivity. Many remote workers can feel left out – whether that’s left out of celebrations, perks, promotions, or something else. Your remote team is also missing out on many opportunities to connect with colleagues and managers. Many also feel like management just doesn’t hear them like they do the in-house team.

Build a rapport by checking in with your remote team, learning about them, and trying to get them involved in various ways. Go the extra mile, and don’t just forget about them because you don’t have to face them every day!

  1. Make Time For One On Ones

Making time for one on ones with your remote employees can help you to ask questions and delve into issues that they may have. They probably don’t have anybody to talk about this with, so it can be a big help! You may not need to take this kind of measure when hiring professional virtual services, but if you’re hiring a remote freelancer or contractor like you would any other employee, you should make time for this.

To understand your remote team better and do better by them, you can ask questions like the following:

  • What does your daily routine look like?

  • What is your favorite part of working remotely?

  • Do you feel included:

  • Do you wish you had more in-person meetings, less in-person meetings, or are you happy with the amount of in-person meetings?

  • How are our tools working for you?

  • How could we better support you?

  • Do you need anything to help with your workspace set up?

  1. Use Animated Gifs and Emoticons in Your Messages

Much of the conversation you will have with your remote team is non verbal, and this can make it difficult to convey how you truly feel about something. Words could come across more aggressive, or perhaps not as impactful as you mean them.

Finding the perfect gif might seem silly, but it can really let the person receiving the message know the intent. You’ll often get a much better response, too!

  1. Don’t Forget About Their Career Paths 

Your remote employees have career goals of their own, too. Understanding their goals and career aspirations will help to avoid confusion and frustration. You can talk more about their career development in their one to ones together.

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  1. Send Gifts

Gifts and bonuses can be a wonderful treat to receive. Your in-house team probably takes freebies for granted, so share some of the love with your remote workers!

  1. Have A Budget For Home Offices

Perhaps you could generously buy high quality office supplies, or even give your remote team their own standing desk for their home office. The money you spend on your remote team’s workspace will make them happier and more effective at their jobs.

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