To ensure that the long-legged spider that had taken up residence in the corner of your shower has gone, you could remind yourself that ‘absence makes the heart grow fonder’. Additionally, you could hope that the spider had found an exit through the open window, rather than taking refuge in your pristine work shoes.
Furthermore, this situation applies to the chef who, while they had intended to douse their perfectly cooked fish basted with lemon with tartar sauce, mistakenly used ketchup instead. Unfortunately, they were left watching as the waiter swiftly removed the dish from the kitchen.
As managers, it is essential that we do not allow the term ‘distant colleagues’ to be used when referring to remote workers. The success of our teams, both those that are based in-house and those that are operating remotely, is highly dependent on the engagement of our remote personnel. As such, it is essential that we ensure that all staff members feel valued and connected to the organisation.
By utilising this process, it is possible to ensure that everyone within the company is informed, including those who do not have a direct involvement in the process. Furthermore, it allows remote workers to remain connected and to feel part of the team despite their geographical distance.
A recent employee engagement study by Slack has revealed that an overwhelming majority of workers (85%) are eager to feel more connected to their colleagues, despite the distance that may separate them. These employees have a sense of purpose, feel valued, and are motivated to achieve their goals. There is no need to take our word for it, as the findings of the study are clear.
It is understandable that enthusiasm for working remotely is high, however, BusinessNewsDaily has reported that this may lead to workers feeling disconnected and isolated, which can consequently cause them to become less productive and less effective in their work.
Whilst we may not be living in a world where remote workers can congregate in a virtual space, technology and communication have developed to the point where staying in contact with colleagues and clients is a simple task, regardless of whether they are situated close by or joining a video call from a beach in Spain.
Promote Frequent and Open Dialog
The importance of effective communication is paramount when it comes to working remotely. It is essential to ensure that all employees remain engaged and connected during this period, and one of the most effective ways of doing this is to promote open lines of communication. This will help to foster a sense of collaboration and trust, which are essential for successful remote working.
It is essential that our remote workers have the same level of communication and engagement as those who are based in the office, and using software such as Slack, GoToMeeting or Google Hangouts is a great way to start. Furthermore, it is important to ensure that there is space for informal conversations as well as more professional ones.
Research has suggested that a significant degree of employee engagement may be attributed to the possibility of employees, both those working in the office and remotely, to become acquainted in a more informal environment, through informal conversations. CultureSummit has accurately outlined the potential benefits of using an instant messaging programme, which can be used for brief conversations without the need to generate an email correspondence.
Given the importance of cross-departmental cooperation in fuelling creativity, this could be a significant aid in encouraging personnel to share their concepts with each other.
Mixed Realm Interaction
In order to ensure that remote workers remain connected and feel included within the team dynamic, it is beneficial to arrange for them to have a virtual presence in the office. ITAGroup highlighted the potential of video conferencing software, which allows remote workers to both observe and take an active role in meetings.
A recent essay from Works has explored the potential implications of telepresence robots for remote worker engagement. The article suggests that it is imperative for employers to embrace innovative technologies that enable employees to feel connected to the workplace even when they are not physically present. This technology could have a significant impact on how organisations engage with their remote workforce in the future.
In order to ensure effective communication and collaboration with remote employees, it is essential to select the most suitable video software for your business and provide training for all staff on how to use it effectively. Furthermore, we must strive for widespread adoption of the software by in-house personnel to ensure that everyone is able to communicate and work together effectively with distant colleagues.
It is essential to bear in mind that many remote workers may be operating in different time zones when arranging meetings. This can be difficult to coordinate, but it is important to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to come together and enjoy the company of familiar colleagues. This can have a positive effect on morale, as well as encouraging greater engagement in the workplace. Therefore, careful consideration should be given to the planning of meetings to ensure that all individuals have the chance to benefit from the presence of friends and colleagues.
Companies should, wherever possible, arrange for personnel who are located at a distance to travel to the office for special events, such as a welcoming event for a new recruit, or an annual corporate retreat or other event. This will enable those staff members to become familiar with the other people in the office, and help to foster a sense of shared community and purpose.
Universal Involvement of Workers
An effective manager understands the importance of employee engagement, whether staff are based in-house or working remotely. A great manager will make use of this information to ensure their team is as successful as possible. To ensure that all team members feel a sense of belonging, it is essential to involve them in the process.
In the modern age, communication has become increasingly simple and convenient due to the rise of various forms of digital media. Social media networks, video conferencing software, and chat platforms have all made it easier than ever before to connect with people and put a face to the name. This has revolutionised the way we communicate, allowing us to connect with one another more quickly and effectively than ever before.
In our recent blog post covering how to bring a remote team together, we highlighted the importance of utilising professional social networking sites such as LinkedIn and Yammer for connecting with your colleagues outside of formal meetings. We also suggested organising virtual coffee breaks with no business agenda to foster team camaraderie and collaboration.
The ultimate goal is to receive commendations from colleagues and employers on the level of engagement between employees, where engagement is defined as the frequency and intensity of communication between in-house and remote staff, and not any type of romantic associations between the two groups.
Once the correct working environment and resources are in place for your remote staff, you will be able to experience the vast improvements in productivity and morale. If you are interested in boosting employee engagement, but haven’t yet established your own team, we recommend that you contact Works right away.