With the COVID-19 crisis still far from over, most organizations continue on struggle with how to motivate their remote workforce. They fully understand the need to have a motivated and engaged workforce to drive business growth and profitability amidst challenging market conditions.
Challenges of Managing and Motivating Remote Employees
There are several challenges associated with managing and motivating remote employees.
One of the biggest challenges of motivating remote employees is the lack of proper, timely, and clear two-way communication between employees and their supervisors as well as between co-workers.
This is results in unclear goals and priorities, lack of sharing of important information, poor coordination, lack of inputs and feedback, and eventually poor trust levels, disengagement and isolation of remote workers.
Given that work from home or remote working is here to stay for a long time, organizations need to understand how to motivate their remote workforce effectively.
Discussed below are 7 strategies for organizations to motivate their remote workforce and keep them productive and engaged:
1. Set Clear Goals and Expectations
Organizations should clearly establish the expectations they have from their remote working employees. These expectations should include tasks, priorities, deadlines, availability for meetings, and even their communication and feedback methodologies.
Managers and supervisors in the organization need to be trained and coached to create a clear and transparent work environment without any ambiguity. Knowing what is expected of them helps employees plan their work ahead and deliver accordingly. It gives them a sense of achievement/ fulfillment to have completed the work expected of them.
2. Provide the Right Tools, Infrastructure and Support
The lack of proper work tools such as communication, collaboration and project management tools required by the employees can severely impact the ability of the employees to deliver on work assigned to them. This, in turn can impact their productivity and motivation.
Facilities required by remotely working employees should extend to even workstations, ergonomic seating, and even a fast internet connection. Organizations also need to provide remote technical support for hardware and software issues that the employees may face.
Read 7 Ways HR Software can support your Remote Workers
3. Create a Mindset of Learning and Growth
The organization needs to create a virtual work environment that stimulates learning and growth for remotely working employees. This needs to be done through a combination of live online training sessions, self-learning modules and on-the-job learning.
Employee should be assigned projects and tasks that require them to expand their skillset. This encourages them to focus on improving their performance and efficiency.
4. Demonstrate Care and Concern
Organizations should demonstrate care and concern for their employees during these challenging times to build their trust and commitment.
In this current pandemic situation, employee and family wellness plans are great ways for organizations to show that they care. Other initiatives can include flexible work schedules to enable remote employees to care for ailing or elderly family members.
Read Employee Wellness Ideas for Work from Home
5. Communicate to Build Trust
Remotely working employees often feel isolated if they are not communicated with properly. Managers and supervisors need to assure employees that their ideas, opinions, and concerns are important for the organization.
They need to share important updates, listen to them, and take requisite action. This helps in building trust with the employees as they feel an integral part of the organization they work for.
6. Acknowledge and Recognize Achievements
Appreciating remote working employees for their good work and dedication is another effective way to keep them motivated. Being recognized assures the employees that their work is being valued and that they are making a positive contribution to business growth and success.
Managers and supervisors should leverage digital employee recognition platforms to recognize their team members. Organizations should also enable peer-to-peer recognition through these platforms.
Read Importance of Employee Recognition during difficult times
7. Seek and Give Regular Feedback
Seeking and giving feedback can go a long way in keeping the employees motivated, especially when they are working remotely. It enables both the managers and the employees to understand the needs of one another and thus work together in a more coordinated manner.
Regular feedback also helps in building trust levels with the supervisors and the organization. Employee pulses and surveys can help organizations get regular feedback from remotely working employees.
These are the 7 strategies for organizations to their motivate remote workforce and get higher employee productivity and performance, which in turn can help in business growth during these challenging times.
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