Working from home comes with its perks of avoiding the daily commute and a flexible schedule, but it also comes with a handful of challenges. Some of these challenges include miscommunication with employees and co-workers, feelings of social isolation when there is no one at home, and a loss of productivity due to less efficient communication.
As a manager, you can follow these guidelines to minimise miscommunication.
Setting clear expectations for employees to achieve each day will give them a defined goal to work towards, then following up on the state of the tasks at the end of each day will ensure performance is not compromised.
You should also monitor and track employees’ progress in order to ensure that performance standards are maintained by following up the task they have on their plate at the end of the day.
You can track the progress of the project using tools such as Slack and Trello. You can also monitor employees’ attendance using time and attendance software to make sure that they are at their computers when working from home.
With all files being electronic, cloud storage such as Dropbox, Acronis and Amazon S3 can allow access to multiple people, facilitating ease of collaboration.
Ask your employees for feedback throughout the process in order to constantly improve the organizational and management process of working from home.
It is also important to set communication guidelines to avoid confusion when it comes to discussion for work. An effective communication guideline should have a list of clearly defined objectives and clear description and timing for each activity.
Also, make sure to constantly update each other and have access to each other calendar to know each other’s whereabouts.
Other than work, you should also maintain the friendly relations of the team by checking in with each other every morning and have a small chat about what is going on in each other’s personal lives.
Managers should set up communication channels preference with everyone on his/her team to avoid confusion.
If you would like to convey your message to a particular person, make sure to use message tagging so that the other party will know which message requires his/her attention.
Certain ground rules should be set when it comes to communicating. For example, certain group chats are only for work purposes and for non-work related messages or content should be sent in another group chat. Also, provide the opportunity to let everyone to speak up and share their ideas. If the meaning of your messages is not conveyed via messaging or email, try to use a different avenue of communication to connect with the other party (e.g. a call).
We hope you all the best in managing your employees who are working remotely.