What We’ve Learned About Remote Work

Now that we have almost a year of working in remote environments, we have learned some lessons about creating the best work-from-home workplace. The beginning of working from home was clunky and hectic, as employees were working from kitchen tables or learning how to use new meeting technology. We also had to learn more nuanced skills of managing our time, team, and mental health during times of constant change and uncertainty. Here are the three major lessons learned on how to work from home effectivley.
Remote relationship management is imperative
In a remote work environment, relationship building with your coworkers and team takes proactive effort. You can’t just swing by someone’s desk or have banter by a coffee machine. Communication has to be purposeful, and a direct reach out may be necessary to build a connection. Book out time at least bi-weekly to have one-on-ones and spend a part of the time having personal discussions. Make a note of what is going on in their personal lives and ask honestly personal questions about events, people, and pets in their lives.  Make an effort to convey and promote employee appreciation. Especially during budget-conscious times, employee appreciation doesn’t have to be expensive. Making the small gesture of showing that you appreciate and care about their contributions can go a long way.
Setting boundaries about work promotes balance
When your home and your office are in the same location, it can be difficult to establish healthy boundaries around your job. This article offers remote work tips on how to set healthy boundaries at work and home to achieve better balance. Physical and mental health is essential, and you will need to prioritize your mental health and wellbeing. Being aware of how working remote might be impacting you and putting together a self-care plan will help you best manage your health.
Focus on employee’s individual needs
Employees’ needs are incredibly diverse, so they need to be managed and supported based on their individual needs. Knowing how your employees are wired and what is going on in their personal lives will help you best cater to what they need right now. For example, if you have an employee who is a single mother, she may need more flexibility in her schedule as she is attempting to juggle remote learning with working remote. Additionally, you may need to promote and model healthy behaviors like using time off and boundaries around work hours. If you want your team to know that those behaviors are okay, you have to show them by living the values that you’re promoting.

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