5 Tips for Leading a Remote Workforce
It is not business as usual with so many working as a remote workforce. And it is business as usual. Certainly, the pandemic facilitated employees working at home. Yet, with technological gains this was beginning to happen anyway. However, in chaotic times communication is of greater importance to strengthen team relationships and results. And you cannot allow a remote team to be an excuse for poorer performances.
Here are 5 tips for Leading a Remote Workforce
- Do not rely on email or phone conferencing. Use these to follow-up on decisions and announcements of information. Use a system like Zoom, WebEx, or Microsoft Teams to keep in touch. Learn how to do it so you are not clunking around during a meeting. It is not face to face, but it works great for communicating and problem-solving.
- Conduct weekly team meetings of sixty minutes or less. A team of remote workforce employees is not a valid excuse not to do this. Include the team in sharing information (assignments, presentations, support, or round robin communication). Most importantly, start on time, end on time. Send an agenda out in advance and ask for other items.
- Do a brief warm-up or icebreaker or teambuilding activity before a meeting-5-10 minutes. It helps keep things interesting, different, and fun. Get other team members involved in leading this part.
- Establish weekly one-on-one meetings that you schedule with each direct report. Use excellent coaching skills. You cannot lead just by doing meetings. You are not face-to-face as much. Consequently, these sessions are even more critical than ever. You and each employee need engagement time.
- Give more recognition: Add this to your agenda for team meetings, and one-on-ones. Recognition is always valuable when genuine and appropriate. Focus on progress, engagement, and performance. With the pandemic people’s negative emotions are rampant. Therefore, they need encouragement and positivity.
- Bonus: Do not deal with employee’s performance issues on a Zoom call for example. Take it offline one-on-one. Of course, if someone is obviously insubordinate that is another issue. If you must deal with team conflict issues in a meeting, make sure you do your homework ahead of time. Certainly, this may include some one-on-one prep work. Always remain calm. Emotions are highlighted online.
Pulling It All Together
In summary, whether you have a remote workforce or not genuine communication remains paramount. Each of the abouve tips adds to better teamwork. Furthermore, you must treat your team with the utmost respect. Your integrity as a leader is on the line. Without it you become a boss and a placeholder. You lose all trust.
P.S. As a reminder, see this quick post: The Greatest Leadership Principle of All-Time for elevating positivity with your team in these challenging times. This is crucial for genuine team cohesion and communication. Even more so with remote workforces. They need encouragement and support. Be safe and take care.
Also, are you committed to your team’s success? If so, see this complimentary Coaching for Results eBook.
In addition, go here for our RealTime Learning & Training leadership and personal development website. Over 140 micro-learning and career development resources at your fingertips-great for remote workforces!
Finally, do you want to accelerate your leadership success? Go here for Rick’s Superstar Leadership eBook.