By focusing on these five areas, you can support and motivate your team to work from home effectively.
1. Provide purpose
People feel driven when they have a purpose and know what they’re working towards. Employees might find being in a busy shared workplace helps them to feel a sense of purpose while they work alongside others. They could feel disconnected from this when they adjust to working from home, and this could impact their motivation and drive to get things done.
But you can still help your team to feel motivated and to have a sense of purpose when working remotely. Explore the ways you can encourage and motivate individual team members, connect in a group to talk about team goals, and tie tasks or projects back to a purpose they can feel part of.
2. Open feedback channels
Without their boss, manager or colleagues right next to them, employees will need different ways to get feedback on their work or progress. Speak to them about the best ways to do this and set up avenues for regular feedback and check-ins.
You could also encourage them to use their own critical eye to assess their work, by coming back to tasks with fresh eyes for review where possible. Making sure employees have clear instructions and a plan for any projects from the get-go can also help them to work effectively.
3. Equip teams with the right tech
Ensure your employees can make the most of the technology available for them to work from home. There are plenty of options out there for video calling, instant messaging and project management, so see what your organisation can offer or what you can access.
Check out 4 tech tools to help your team work remotely for some ideas.
Your team may run into tech issues when working from home, so encourage them to get familiar with the technology and programs they need to use, and distribute guides or fact sheets for them to troubleshoot simple issues where possible.
4. Create a clear structure and systems
Keeping track of individual and team tasks and projects might take a bit of adjusting when your team is working remotely. Perhaps you had a project board or other physical ways to do this in the workplace, but now need to find a new format.
For work that involves multiple team members, project management apps or online systems like Trello could be a big help, so check out what options are available. Ensuring any shared digital documents are well-organised, secure and easily accessible will also help employees work faster, smarter and more effectively.
Individually, there could be greater need for employees to self-manage their time and priorities, so regular check-ins may need to include helping them to focus on what’s most important.
5. Encourage connection
For employees, working from home can feel totally different to the team environment of a busy workplace where they can bounce ideas off colleagues or even just chat.
Connection is essential, so look at what methods are available to help remote employees stay in touch. Can you set up regular phone calls or video meetings? Can you create team chats using instant messaging tools or other platforms? Find ways to help work-from-home employees share wins, address problems, combat boredom or loneliness and collaborate.
Ultimately, working from home can take some adjusting for you and for employees. But by focusing on these five areas, you can help your team stay positive and productive and make the most of working remotely.