Although work from home arrangements have been a steadily growing trend among businesses for several years, the majority still maintain fairly traditional office work environments. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has flipped the script and forced many companies to quickly adapt to address shelter-in-place and quarantine guidelines and regulations. And for many, it has been a bit of an adjustment, to say the least.
In particular, company managers have had to adapt to leading their teams remotely. In today’s ever-connected world, that process is made easier though various communication technologies, but for those who are used to daily, in-person interactions with their employees, it can be a daunting task.
Here are four quick tips to help leaders adjust to the new normal of leading remotely.
At the office, it’s easy to swing by someone’s desk or stop for a chat at the coffee pot. When working remotely, those interactions don’t happen and before you know it, you could easily go days with little or no communication. So, it’s important to check in with your employees daily, either as a team or individually, to make sure they are staying on track and that they have all the information, resources, and direction to keep their projects moving forward.
Additionally, checking in with your team more regularly, whether by phone, email, or video chat, allows you to watch for signs of stress and burnout. Everyone wants to do their part to help maintain productivity during this unprecedented time, but it’s important to ensure your employees are still balancing their work with their personal lives when working from home.
Set Daily Goals
Setting daily goals, or at least keeping a list of tasks to accomplish each day, is good practice, no matter where you work. However, it’s especially helpful for keeping your team on track as you settle into a new work-from-home routine.
There is a variety of project management software available online that allows you and your employees to stay up to date and on task with daily goals and overall projects that are worth looking into during this time.
Everyone is adjusting to the new normal amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and there will most certainly be mistakes and missteps. Be prepared to allow some grace as your employees figure out how to operate in this new environment and let them know you understand this adjustment isn’t easy. And, just because you’re the leader, it doesn’t mean you aren’t allowed to make a mistake or two yourself. Just remember that everyone is in this together.
Last, but certainly not least, don’t forget to show appreciation for your team’s hard work during this challenging time. It’s not just their jobs that have been upended, their personal lives have been flipped upside down as well. Ensuring your employees know that their hard work and dedication hasn’t gone unnoticed will help them feel validated and takes a bit of a very heavy weight off their shoulders.