Obtaining the commitment of remote employees with the mission, values and objectives of the company is one of the great challenges of the business world. Something that is even more complicated when workers do not carry out their work from the corporation's facilities but from their homes.
Is it possible to make an employee feel really integrated into the company and notice that he is part of it if he never or almost never goes to their offices?
The work environment has changed drastically in a short time, now face-to-face work coexists with other modalities such as the hybrid format or total teleworking, and this poses important challenges that must be addressed now.
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The role of the leader as a way to maintain the commitment of remote employees
The leader is the point of union between the company and its employees. You must meet the objectives that your superiors have set for you and, at the same time, you have to be able to connect with those who have a lower position than you. Even from a distance, the leader must be the mirror in which the employees look at themselves and in which they see an example to follow.
For this reason, a large part of the responsibility when it comes to achieving the commitment of teleworkers falls directly on those who exercise leadership. Let's see what they can do to achieve it.
Gain remote employee engagement
Define teams and tasks
One of the main reasons why the commitment of remote workers is lower than that of those who carry out their work in person is that, frequently, the teleworker finds that he does not know very well what is expected of him and what he has to do.
This is not the fault of the employee, but of the company itself. Overcome the crisis of confinement, which forced to take measures quickly, in many businesses A telework system that is really effective and well planned has not been established.
The first thing to do is define the work teams, because the fact that remote work is adopted does not mean that people stop working as a team. Fortunately, the technology we have today allows us to carry out our work tasks collaborating and contacting directly with other people, although we do not have them next to us.
When establishing the work team, it is necessary to define the tasks that this team will assume and, at the same time, the responsibilities of each member.
Whether working in the company premises or from home, the employee must be clear about which team they are part of, what the group objectives are, what their individual objectives are, what tasks to take on, and what others do.
This makes the worker much more efficient in fulfilling his obligations and, at the same time, keeps you linked to the company and the people who are your co-workers, even if you don't see them every day.
Choosing the tools as a way to maintain the engagement of remote employees
It is the leader's job to make sure that the technology gap between employees is minimal. It is not just about equipping staff with the technological equipment that is necessary to work remotely, it must be ensured that everyone knows how to handle it properly.
In addition, you have to predetermine the tools to be used in each case, so that everyone is clear about how they should act. For example, team meetings are held via video conference, while simple communications between colleagues will take place via email.
Provide personalized training
It may happen that a team member does not know how to use video conferencing applications well, that he is not able to organize his work when it comes time to do it without supervision, or that he extends his working hours unnecessarily by the mere fact of being at home.
Telecommuting is something new that most employees are not used to, so problems arise from the lack of certain knowledge, and also associated with habits that are not good. All this can make the worker feel unhappy with his situation and notice more and more "detached" from the organization.
In order to avoid all this, the best solution is to offer personalized training. Must examine where team members are lacking that may affect them in order to fulfill their tasks remotely, and work to solve them.
This helps staff members to be more efficient workers and, at the same time, shows them that your company cares about them, thus reinforcing the bond.
Promote trust as a way to maintain the commitment of remote employees
Confidence is not something that arises overnight. In fact, it costs more to build it than to destroy it, and that is something that the leader must keep in mind.
It is up to him to develop attitudes that give rise to confidence in his employees. To do this, you must show your most human side, even admitting that the challenge of teleworking is also something complex for him.
With employees who can be working from anywhere in the world, it is more necessary than ever that all of them feel safe if they need to communicate something: an incident at work, a problem with a colleague, a suggestion, etc.
Achieving that connection depends on how the leader behaves and how he reacts to his subordinates. For trust to arise there needs to be a personal relationship that can be more or less deep.
The employee must be made to see that he can trust his leader if he has a problem directly related to work, but also if he needs to talk about other issues that, not being purely work-related, may be affecting his performance.
The good thing about trust is that, based on good communication, it can both emerge and remain intact in the online environment.
The recognition of the achievements of employees by leaders is something still recent within the field of labor relations. But we know it's a very simple way to motivate both to those who receive the praise, and to the rest of the team, who knows that perhaps at some point they will also be publicly congratulated.
Unfortunately, in many companies, the recognition of achievements has been totally ignored at the moment in which employees have begun to carry out their work remotely, and this is a serious mistake.
That a person spends little time in the office is no reason not to take them into account when their effort bears the desired results. In fact, the effect of recognition is much greater and more effective in teleworkers, making them feel much more linked to the company.
There is no need to wait for a great achievement to be achieved, or to make a recognition in front of the entire squad. The leader can call one of his team members simply to congratulate him on the peace-making attitude he always shows in the most difficult meetings.
Foster growth and development as a way to maintain remote employee engagement
Although telecommuting increases productivity, many employees do not even want to hear about this type of work, because they feel that if they do not go to the office every day they will fall into oblivion and lose professional opportunities.
For an employee, it is very demotivating to be fulfilling their obligation from home and not be taken into account for promotions, or for training, simply because they do not go to the workplace every day.
It is the responsibility of the company, through its leaders, to continue fostering the growth and professional development of all staff membersregardless of where they work from. Only in this way can teleworkers feel truly integrated.
Constantly improve processes
Remote work is a process or a system that is not immutable, it must change over time to achieve maximum effectiveness. But always keeping in mind that the way of organizing work and communicating with those who work from home must be something different.
On the other hand, we must not forget that not all professional profiles are the same, nor does everyone have the same abilities. There are people for whom working from home can be a pleasure, and others who they cannot adapt to this system no matter how much the company provides them with all possible resources.
In short, when maintaining commitment to remote work, the company must ensure that it offers this modality to those who can really adapt to it. If you plan your telecommuting process well, you will have no problem getting the commitment of those who carry out their tasks from home. In fact, the loyalty of teleworkers could exceed that of those who come to the workplace every day.
Hirint allows you to identify the key skills to telecommute or to exercise positive leadership. If you want to know how we do it, book a meeting with us here