More and more business employees are now telecommuting. Companies around the world are restructuring their management practices to meet the challenges of remote collaboration. With the spread of the Coronavirus, workers are being asked to work-from-home and the need for managing remote teams is higher than it’s ever been.
Small businesses are particularly well-positioned to adapt to telecommuting because they tend to be more agile and open to change. Increased productivity and happier employees who appreciate the added flexibility are just a few benefits of winning over small business owners.
Telecommuting, however, can also present some challenges – particularly two core issues. These are keeping track of what remote workers are doing and ensuring that in-house and remote teams form a cohesive unit.
These tips can help you effectively manage and support your remote employees.
Promote communication and accountability
Defining expectations and setting up methods to track results are essential to remote team management. Here are a few ways to make sure your remote workers understand what is expected of them:
- Set up a shareable daily work log your remote workers can use to report their progress on ongoing projects (Google Drive offers some good options).
- Utilize a project management system to exchange messages, assign tasks and monitor projects rather than relying solely on email.
- Determine key indicators for success for each remote worker and share these indicators with your employees (these might be daily, weekly or monthly goals).
- Conduct regular reviews with remote workers to assess their performance.
Include remote workers in office culture
Positive work culture and employee engagement are quickly becoming top priorities for business managers who want to retain top talent. These tips will help your remote workers feel just as valued as your in-house team.
- If your in-house workers enjoy a monthly pizza party, don’t forget to include your remote teams. You can invite them to attend or have a meal delivered to them, or even offer a gift certificate to a favorite restaurant.
- Get to know and spend time with your remote workers, just as you would with in-house staff. Set aside a few moments each day to inquire about their families, personal interests, recent challenges and successes.
- Consider pairing up remote workers to complete complex tasks. You’ll improve efficiency while helping remote workers feel like part of the team.
Ready to enjoy the benefits of remote teams?
If you think the benefits of remote workers outweigh the risks, try offering your staff a workday at home for a week at first. Then, if it works out, you can try hiring remote employees. Some small business owners hire a remote employee in a different region. This is a great strategy for expanding their market.
Trust your employees to work hard no matter where they’re located. The main thing to remember is fostering teamwork. A monthly meeting that everyone is required to attend can encourage stronger relationships, allow opportunities to clear the air or discuss any challenges – and improve a sense of teamwork and camaraderie.
As a remote bookkeeper, with my own remote team, I understand the importance of achieving cohesion. Let’s work together to keep your books in order.
Get in touch: 877-454-2249