Leadership And Remote Work
Leaders can accomplish effective leadership whether working with an in-person team, or a remote team. Remote work is not new to the business environment, but it became somewhat of the norm for most organizations since the pandemic. I believe it really comes down to having compassion as a leader, when managing remote teams.
This article will highlight ideas leaders can use to successfully manage remote teams for the road ahead.
In our current environment, most crucial work now happens virtually, from hiring and performance reviews and board meetings to high-value business deals. Employers must allow their employees the opportunity to understand and excel in this novel virtual environment which is now being codified as the communication tool of the near future.
Leaders of remote teams must be considerate and respectful of boundaries because the employees work environment may not be as ideal as in the office or unexpected family issues may arise. When we speak of compassion in this context, it means understanding when an emergency occurs, be it the employee or a family member.
Another crucial factor to keep in mind is the one-on-one meeting with team members. Leaders should meet on a regular basis, keeping the time short so that it can be productive. Sometimes a one-on-one meeting that goes too long can be counter-productive and defeats the purpose.
Employees must still be accountable for their goals and expectations in their respective roles whilst working remotely. Leaders must not be afraid to hold team members accountable to those expectations. Whether its team members who may be poor performers and need extra guidance to high performers who may seem like they do not need your help. Leaders must always be cognizant that employee’s one-on-one remains important even though team members are doing their jobs well.
Leaders need to be more creative in demonstrating that they care about their team members in a remote setting. Communication should not be all a business nature all the time. Showing others that you care about them personally, can contribute to a strong work relationship in a remote setting.
I believe that people appreciate compassionate leaders, and they want to collaborate with them, particularly in a remote setting. A genuine ability to care and understand your team can go a long way. Remote work, limits the team’s ability to interact with colleagues, so being creative with opportunities for the team to virtually interact can be beneficial.
Leaders can also change the channel of “everything digital” by using regular mail, “snail mail” to deliver tokens of appreciation to their members because it can go a long way.
Leaders must not forget that it is people who make companies work, and organizations who engage the hearts and minds of employees, will quickly outperform others, regardless of remote or in-person teams.
In conclusion, leaders have a responsibility to make each member of their team feel like they are making a beneficial contribution to the group and the organizations overall success. Having compassion, acknowledging boundaries, being considerate, respectful, and showing genuine care, are all leadership traits that leaders must demonstrate particularly in a remote work setting, for the road ahead.