Remote work culture has emerged as an essential part of our work lives around the world. But, working remotely can hurt employee engagement, motivation, and performance. Therefore, it is increasingly important to find smart ways to keep remote employees engaged. Engaging remote employees can help cultivate culture and a feeling of connectedness, while also developing employer branding.
Here are some sure-fire tips to engage remote employees in this world of virtual work:-
1. Revamp Your Internal Communications Strategy
An effective internal communication strategy is crucial for managing remote employees in any organisation. Timely, honest, and open communication can help remote working teams understand the long-term and short-term goals of their work. Re-think and restructure your internal communications strategy to ensure that all your remote employees feel connected and involved.
2. Team Building Games & Activities
Team bonding comes naturally to a team that works together in the same workspace. For remote working teams, forming relationships and maintaining team bonding needs conscious effort. Consider team-building activities such as virtual break rooms where people can have casual conversations, virtual coffee meets over video calls and friendly challenges that encourage interaction among team members.
3. Schedule a Time to Connect Regularly
Think of the pandemic as any other cultural or procedural change in your work life. Whenever your employees are dealing with transition, communicating with them regularly keeps up their morale and helps them feel supported. Schedule one-on-one meetings to understand how people are coping with the new circumstances, share thoughts, and collaborate on ideas together frequently.
4. Encourage Work/Life Balance
Working from home can blur the boundaries between working hours and personal time. Encourage your employees to create a separate space for work in their homes (if they are able to) and to occupy this space only for the duration of their working hours, as well as to take frequent breaks from the screen in between. Talk about mental health and wellness, and the importance of good health in these times. A good work/life balance is important for remote working employees to remain motivated, happy, and productive.
5. Be Supportive
Sometimes, all that’s needed for a remote-working employee to feel connected with their co-workers is a show of support. Help and support can be offered in many ways, recognise what your remote employees may need and figure out a way to lend a helping hand. For instance, some organisations have designed fresh policies to offer medical support to their employees in times of pandemic.
6. Empower Remote Employees
Remote working employees may feel a bit lost in their jobs as they can no longer walk over to a senior’s desk to ask the odd question. Build strong mentorship programs to coach employees working remotely and ensure that they have all the support they need. Offering positive reinforcement, constructive feedback, and guidance as well as listening to their views and ideas, is important to help employees feel empowered.
7. Knowledge Sharing Sessions
When working together, it is easy to share knowledge and learn from each other. For a remote team, to grow together, it is essential to find efficient ways of sharing knowledge. Organise virtual knowledge sharing sessions wherein team members can discuss work related challenges and develop collective intelligence through knowledge sharing. Start a forum where your team can share the latest updates.
8. Define Goals & Recognise Achievement
Employees working remotely tend to lose sight of the team goals and vision. Ensure that every member of the team has clearly defined short-term and long-term goals which they clearly understand. Roles and responsibilities should be communicated and performance metrics should be pre-decided for every employee.
Recognising employee achievements and rewarding them for these wins and how it relates to the overall business goals is an important exercise for employee motivation. For remote employees to feel adequately recognised, send words of praise in virtual ‘all-hands’ meetings, or on group e-mails to encourage and improve overall remote team productivity.
Consistent feedback is the cornerstone of good performance. Remote working employees need to know if they are on the right track. Sharing frequent and honest feedback on their work is a great way to engage with remote employees. Employees can deliver more effectively when they have been guided in the right way, and have had the opportunity to input.
In these times of remote working, work cultures need to adapt and build strong engagement systems to help remote employees feel engaged and connected. If you have a nagging feeling that your remote working employees are starting to feel demotivated or may be under-performing, start engaging with them today!
About the Author
Kelly Barcelos is a content marketing manager for Jobsoid and specialises in HR. When Kelly is not building marketing campaigns, she is busy creating content to help people hire better. She shares tips, industry insights, innovations, and several other topics that helps a wide variety of audiences in their hiring efforts. As a working mum of three, she knows the importance of time management and counts on her multitasking ability to get her through her to-do lists.