One of the main problems faced by both supervisors and subordinates when working from home is the lack of communication or its absence. When away from the office, it is difficult to monitor how each employee performs his or her tasks. We recommend you to follow some simple rules.
While you are discussing important business with department heads, ordinary employees can remain silent and engage in non-working activities. Take daily formal and informal communication as a rule. Greet and plan your workday in general chat, solve important issues with video conferencing, all meetings finish with a summary, and duplicate this information in a letter — such events will keep your colleagues in good shape.
If you are actively using chat rooms, oblige employees to put real photos on the avatars. This helps maintain personal contact and team spirit.
Sooner or later you will face a situation when one of the employees will send a funny meme to a common chat room, and the rest will start to discuss it and react quickly, thus turning everything into a flood. To keep working communications safe from unnecessary information, but not to lose team spirit, create a “random chat” in Telegram or WhatsApp. Keep an eye on it as well: what if some employees share entertainment content instead of working?
When a person does not see his or her interlocutor, it is much easier for him or her to express an opinion about the work of the team, his or her problems and grievances. Pay attention to such messages in chat rooms, ask questions yourself, or create an anonymous form for comments — the sooner you realize what or who is slowing down the workflow, the sooner you can make it more effective.
In order for employees working remotely to continue to feel part of the team, share important information with them. Once a week or month, send mailout with company news that will highlight achievements, key development points, the performance of individual employees, and departments.
It is a good idea to send your employees useful materials for their work — for example, cases of other enterprises, news about the industry in which you operate, interesting services.
Work from home should not affect performance. The employees should understand that only the place has changed: all the previously performed tasks are at least the same, as most there are additional ones.
Working hours, lunch and coffee breaks, weekly briefings, KPI with an understandable remuneration system — all of this should be clear to each employee. If it is convenient for you and the majority of employees to start their workday at 9:00 instead of 10:00 — do it.
Don’t forget to talk about such an important point as the finish time. Don’t turn your working day into a working night and working overnight — sooner or later it will demotivate your employee and make them pretend to be busy. At worst, it will lead to his or her resignation.
Talk to your employees that at the end of each working day or week (depending on the number and duration of tasks) they should send you a progress report. It’s better if it comes to email or is reflected in a pre-created table for that. This way, you can monitor the progress of the work and easily determine which of your employees doesn’t take the remote-work seriously.
By performing the same operations daily, some employees can quickly get bored. After all, if the work in the office was associated with many other people, it was necessary to get to it and find inspiration, the routine cannot boast it. Do new special projects that will force employees to leave the comfort zone and interact with other departments and contractors. It invigorates, develops and gives a sense of moving around.
For the correct organization of remote work, you must train your employees to solve problems themselves. Can’t install the necessary application? Give him time to figure it out, not to distract other colleagues and you by asking questions.
If the employee can’t find the phone number of his colleague from another department or has forgotten some information about the company, send him to the company website, internal databases, and work regulations.
In addition, the manager needs to be aware of the employee’s living conditions. Not everyone has a personal office and the opportunity to lock themselves in it for work. Take into account home problems and responsibilities, as well as simple human situations. For example, a cold, feeling unwell, or need to help elderly relatives. If these situations are recurring with high frequency, it is worth talking to the employee. If they will not stop — think about the need for such a person in a team.
The desire to endlessly stay on top of it, check everything, and everyone, to control every dialogue in a chat or call — is not the best property of the manager. If your employees need such “kicks”, it means that you either made a mistake when forming a team or made mistakes in organizing remote work.
When working remotely, it is important to establish rules and control features not only for subordinates but also for yourself:
The manager is a role model for your employees. Daily by showing your own example of how to work remotely, you will consolidate the required model of behavior and increase team spirit.
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