Working remote seemed like a short-term fix a few months ago. But reality has set in, and we’ve all accepted that remote work will be the new norm for the foreseeable future.
Big tech companies, like Twitter and Facebook, have allowed employees to work from home indefinitely, and it’s fair to say that many more companies will do the same. It’s no surprise that studies have found that working from home improves employee productivity, satisfaction, and turnover rates. And although there are some great benefits to working from home, managing a remote team can be a challenge.
A manager’s top goal is to make sure their teammates are set up for success. In order to do this, managers must establish clear goals and expectations. If you’re a manager, check-in with each of your teammates weekly to ask how they’re doing, what projects they’re working on, and how you can best support them. Especially during a time like this, each of us feels a bit alone and isolated. Opening up communication lines can make a huge difference for your team.
As many of us adjusted to working remote, we realized that our workload, kids, pets, and household duties all meshed together during the day. Be patient with your staff partners—we’ve all got a lot going on and have quite a few distractions. Allowing your team to take breaks throughout the day to exercise, homeschool, and cook will allow everyone the flexibility they need to accomplish their laundry list of to-dos.
Another helpful tactic is to allow your staff flexible hours. Maybe one day your teammate needs the morning off to deal with a family commitment—let them. They can double down another day to make up the lost time. We all need to be accommodating to each other’s unique work from home experience.
Managing a remote team is not as easy as you would think. Practice empathy and be flexible with your teammates. We’ve all heard this time and time again, but it still rings true—we are all in this together.
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Derek Rundell, is a successful business leader, operator, and serial entrepreneur. Derek has founded, managed and sold businesses in the technology, media and finance industries. He sits on several boards and serves as an advisor/investor to numerous established businesses and startups. Startups are Derek’s real passion, and in addition to building his own portfolio of technology, media and financial ventures, he invests in and mentors startups and entrepreneurs. He is passionate about sharing his knowledge and helping other businesses succeed.