The past year has brought a significant uptick in how many companies are allowing their employees to work from home. This is a change I’m very happy to see!
Many companies will continue to allow people to work from home after the pandemic is over, and if you’re considering offering this option to your staff, then make sure you’re fully prepared to make it work for your business as best as you can.
Here’s how to make working from home work for you.
Outline Your Expectations
Something you should do very early on is to outline your expectations of what you hope to get out of working from home and how you’re going to make that a reality.
This means you’re less likely to micromanage people and more likely to simply allow your employees to do their work. This can improve happiness for your team and create a more positive atmosphere for your business too.
Don’t expect too much right away while people are getting used to the change. Adapt your expectations accordingly as your team adjusts to the new setup. Everyone should know what to expect from the work-from-home process and structure.
Support Your Staff
Do all you can to support your staff as fully as possible. Supporting them will make them happier and more likely to succeed, and it will prevent mistrust of the process.
Your staff should have the freedom to speak with you if they need help or assistance. Be available and contactable, but that doesn’t mean virtually sitting on their shoulder. Keep an eye on them and offer support as you would in a standard work environment.
Continue having regular meetings to assess how everything is going and whether there’s anything you can do to help them. This might include giving them specific technical help or providing a new computer.
Keep the Team Connected
People working from home often miss the sense of being part of a team. As a manager, you understand the value of a strong, connected team because it brings everyone together, helps them complete their work, and improves morale.
One way to keep your team connected is to host regular virtual events. These events can be fun or serious, and they are helpful for your employees.
Consider a range of virtual networking ideas for your next online event to keep your team connected just as if they were working in the same building.
Expect an Increase in Service Requests
Businesses generally receive many more service requests than before when they start to work from home. If you’re not prepared, then you might struggle to get work done.
Expect the increase before it happens, warn your team, get them ready, and make sure they have the resources they need to work with the increase in demand.
Ask for Feedback
Ask your staff for regular feedback to get a clear sense of how you’re doing and what they might need to work as well as possible. Seek out feedback regularly and act on the information you receive to make this situation work for everyone.
Set up an anonymous comments box through an online comment or poll website and leave it running so people can submit comments whenever they want to. Asking for feedback is one of the most powerful ways to keep your employees happy and make the remote work situation have a positive effect on your business.
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