As a leader of a business, you want to do everything that you can to manage your people effectively. Effective management is not just about where you are all working, but it’s also about how you manage everybody and how everybody can interact. Remote working is our new normal, which means that you’re going to be spending more time dealing with people who are working at home than you would be in an office.
Successful team management is hard enough as it is, but working to keep a remote team together is a whole new kind of difficult. The good news is that it can be done and with the right cloud-based field service management software, you can even manage remote workers who are out contracting. We’ve got some tips to make managing a remote team easier than ever before.
- You have to start with trust. If you’re going to be managing a remote team, you have to trust the people that you are working with.Is the foundation of any working from home situation, but a manager will often find that they struggle with this, especially if they’re not watching what their employees are doing. The thing is, if you are trusting people to work from home in the 1st place, then you have to give them the space to do it and prove to you that it can be done. You can still use management software to track where everybody’s up to in their projects, but you don’t have to be breathing down everybody’s next to get work done. They will do it.
- Set some expectations. Everybody needs to know what’s expected of them when they are working from home or even in the field. If you need people to log where they are, then using the right management software can help you to do this. It’s vital that you are being realistic in your expectations and that you are not being overbearing with your team.
- Keep connecting. Remote staff can’t always attend team meetings in person, so make sure that your team meeting is also accessible on Zoom or on teams itself. You want to be able to build stronger connections and unity, so e-mail is a good tool to get messages across, but it’s video chat. You’re going to need to be able to communicate with people on a face to face level. Keeping the people that work for you aligned and informed is important, but you need to adjust your expectations when it comes to contractors. If they are not permanent employees, then they’re not obliged to be at team meetings because you’re not paying them for that time.
- Continue to be perceptive. Meetings can allow you to read body language and facial expressions of attendees. This will help you to gauge their mood better and identify and diffuse any particular conflicts or situations that could be coming between team members. Nonverbal communication is therefore often missed in telephone calls. You can still be perceptive, but you need to use a different method than body language. Keep up with the people who are working for you and make sure you are checking in with everybody so that communication is regular. One of the biggest tips for remote working is to keep communicating.
- Play by the rules. If you have set expectations and rules for your employees in and out of the office, you have to be consistent with them. You need to treat company information as confidential even when people are out of the office. So make sure that your teams are equipped with the right software and the right technology to do it. Whether people work remotely or not, the same communication tools should be used, and if you are using VPN software to be able to connect, then everybody should have that loaded onto their technology. It’s so important that you are consistent in the way that people are working together, and once you learn how to do that first, you’re going to find that easier to manage everybody in your team.
- Remember to invest in the right software. From planning software to management software, the way that you invest in your technology will make a difference to how you are able to communicate and connect with people. The better you do at this, the easier you will find managing remote teams.
Remote work is not going anywhere anytime soon, so rather than fight it, equip yourself to handle it.