Remote working has grown substantially in the last decade. In fact, even pre-COVID, millions of employees were already working from home at least half the time. Remote work is the future we all must get ready for. The rise of remote work is unavoidable. Allowing remote work can benefit not only your workforce but you as a leader and the organisation as a whole.

Make remote work more productive and engaging for you and your employees with these empathetic but practical actions.

• Invest in your workplace set up.
• Have daily check-ins.
• Communicate effectively.
• Focus on outcomes, not activity.
• Make the most of video conferencing technologies.
• Ensure effective collaboration on documents and spreadsheets.
• Establish boundaries and expectations.
• Take breaks.
• Make sure employees have the technology they need to be successful.
• Be on the lookout for signs of distress in your employees.
• Trust your employees.
• Stay aligned with the company’s culture.
• Nurture virtual friendships.
• Increase effective recognition.
• Encourage innovation.
• Ask for feedback.

If you’re not accustomed to managing remote employees, it can be a learning curve. Below are some of the challenges of working from home – the better you recognize them, the easier it is to mitigate them and succeed as a remote worker or a business owner.

Challenges inherent in remote work include:

• Lack of face-to-face supervision.
• Lack of access to information.
• Social isolation.
• Distractions at home.
• Enhanced issues with already existing silos.

Final thoughts…

• With more employees working remotely, the job of the leader is also evolving. As your team members shift to working remotely, your communication methods will have to adapt, too – recognize the importance of streamlining your communications.

• Traditional, on-site companies often take processes, camaraderie, and culture for granted and allow it to develop organically. But in an all-remote company, you have to organize it.

• To bring out the best in your remote employees, offer training opportunities on how to work from home efficiently, provide clear goals and a path for career development, give feedback and recognition, and keep the lines of communication open.