In 1979, IBM was making headlines by becoming the first fortune 500 companies to allow employees to work from home. That’s right, nearly 40 years ago the corporate giant adopted this modern outlook on work. In fact, IBM found the practice to be so successful that by 2009, 40% of their 386,000 employees worked remotely.
According to Gallup (Management Consulting company in the US), Remote workers put in longer hours and are more productive than their non-remote peers. So why are we still debating this??
The truth is, for all its benefits, working remotely can have its struggles. Perhaps the issue isn’t with the remote work, it’s how we manage and work with remote employees.
In this blog, we will talk about how to make remote work more productive, innovative & agile. For managers & co-workers, to develop successful relationships with remote workers, they all have to make changes.
06 Useful Tips to cultivate the productive culture of Work from Home
Tip 1 – Setting up the expectation:
No one likes to feel like they’re in the dark, so start by setting expectations. Clear and honest communication is even more important for remote workers. Remote workers don’t have a luxury of being able to swing by your desk to ask questions, be sure to set up the right expectations for everyone.
Tip 2 – Establish a Meeting Rhythm:
What doesn’t get measured, doesn’t get managed. If you are not meeting people on a set time, on a set rhythm, people can get distracted and they are not focused on executing their work.
For Example: Set up Daily Stand-up call and Stand-down call, maybe like 10:00 am & 04:30 pm for 15 minutes on each call just to check up whether things are as planned.
But wait…. “Without a structure, won’t things drag out?”
Tip 3 – Have a chatroom:
Is it practically possible to discuss single detail from every single person from your entire team in 15 or 30 minutes call a day? No… Right….??
So, make sure you set up a quick chatroom with full of people associated with the team, who can do a quick discussion on things they might need from each other. This will save a lot of time, efforts and help reduce the dependencies.
Tip 4 – Effective collaboration:
Even though you have a chatroom, it is really important to have an effective collaboration on the document and make sure that all the important deliverables are noted down, jotted down and allocated to individual task owners along with specified timelines. Such internal milestones must be monitored in a documented way until it is fully delivered.
These tracking document will also help to understand “how the magic happened from raw to robust result.”
Tip 5 – Track measure of productivity:
If organization allow people to work whenever they want and wherever they want, it is crucial to measure that how much time they are putting inside the business what results they are getting.
If client-facing employee is much more productive than an employee at the backend support and they are putting the exact amount of time, but formal is more productive than the later. In this case, the Manager needs to figure out a different tracking measurement for the type of employees and type of work product they are supposed to deliver. You can’t have the same KPI for all individuals.
Remember this – “Different people, Different skills, Different goals.”
Tip 6- Do Not go for flexible work hours:
If the employee is going to office daily and if it’s a routine, then flexible work hours make sense. But for the remote workers, flexi-work hours can become a hell in the home. This imbalance the personal-profession consistency.
So, make sure to have a culture of setting up a fix working hours for yourself which should be aligned with the rest of the team. So that everyone can be on the same page and can also enjoy personal life freedom at the same time.
“ Else you might not have a home to go from office, and you will also loose office to work from.”
The Bottom Line is – Organizations want employees to be more productive, whenever they work & wherever they work from.
So, be sure –
- To schedule consistent check-ins,
- Pick up the phone or connect over video to make the conversation more natural,
- Have trust and confidence in remote workers and
- Track the productivity.
Just being in the office does not guarantee that an employee is being productive. By changing your attitude and management style, we can make work from home, work for a team.
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