How Managers Can Lead Teams They Can't See
How do you manage team members that work remotely that you can't see every day? Traditionally, organizations had managers that walked around and checked on employees. They knew their employees were working because they physically saw them doing so. In a flexible work environment where your employees are located at home, in a co-working spot, or in a coffee shop, you can't actually do this. So how do you know they are actually working and how can you manage them if you can't actually walk over to their desks to talk to them? There are a few things that can be done.
Leveraging technology is one way that you can manage remote workers. It is also very important to set very clear guidelines and expectations; such as having set times that your remote workers can be reached. When you focus on the deliverables from your remote workers the need to "see" them isn't really needed any longer as long as those deliverables are of the same high quality that you would receive if they were working in the same office as you. One thing that successful organizations do is they still meet with their remote workers once or twice a year so that there is still some physical interaction and that piece doesn't completely go away.
Using internal social networks, video conferencing, task management programs, setting specific guidelines and expectations with your remote workers is a must for successfully managing a remote or virtual team. When you leverage technology and set those guidelines and communicate, you have the recipe for a successful working relationship with your remote workers.
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