How to Motivate Your Team Even Though They Are Working Remotely
Remote work has become a normal practice for millions of businesses in different industries. However, the whole process can be tiresome without the appropriate approach, as the majority of workers tend to lose productivity over time.
Even though many would say that they are productive from home, after some time passes, a loss of motivation and productivity inevitably occurs. Luckily, there are steps that can be taken to ensure that your remote team is going to stay motivated. Let’s take a look at some of the things you could do to maintain your remote team’s motivation over longer periods of time.
Make communication your priority
Even though isolation can sometimes be good, with remote work, it becomes an impersonal task that needs to be finished every day. A manager simply contacts the worker to get the job done, and that is it. The remote worker does not feel like he is working with people, but with machines that simply expect some results from him or her. Even though a good financial reward is a great source of motivation, it does not last for a very long time.
This is precisely why establishing multiple communication channels is important. The remote worker will get in touch with different people, which will help them start feeling like they are working with an actual team. Establishing multiple channels of communication, such as email, Skype or social media network contact is also important for productivity.
A good idea is to set up a regular video call schedule with your remote team, as it will allow you to effectively deliver different types of information to them. For example, you could set up weekly video conference meetings with all of your remote workers. Additionally, you should let anyone from the team know that if they want private video chat, they can freely reach out to you.
Track and analyze performance
Yes, trust is important, but adding employee monitoring software is going to make it possible for you to follow the performance of every individual in the remote team.
Run a test, assign different tasks to different team members and track their progress. Someone will take 2 hours to complete a particular task, whereas, someone else is going to take 4. Doing this will not only allow you to save time on your whole project but to assign tasks that your employees will enjoy working on.
This is very important for employee motivation, as we all like to work things that we can easily finish. It brings benefits both for the business and the employee.
Give praise to your remote team
Many project managers are unaware that remote employees cannot hear their tone or see their facial expressions when they are talking to them. Furthermore, once the task is complete, there is no feedback if everything went fine. However, they always return to the remote employee when corrections are needed.
How does this look from the remote team’s side? Well, they are only criticized for their work, and they are never given praise. This might not be an issue for a project or two, but if you are expecting to work with a team for a longer period of time, this can severely impede their motivation. Therefore, it is best to give praise at least when the project is completed.
However, it might be a better idea to give praise per task well done. The more positive feedback your remote team receives, the better their productivity and motivation are going to be, as they are going to feel that their efforts are being recognized.
Dedicate time for their growth
No matter if you are working with in-house or remote teams, you should realize that both want to grow their skills. Therefore, make sure that you communicate to the remote employees that they have the option of learning.
If your business has its own LMS, you can provide them with access to learning materials, or you can let them pick a course they are interested in, on the learning platforms such as Coursera, Udemy or other similar platforms.
Having the opportunity to grow is going to further motivate your remote team. It will also help you retain high-quality employees who are going to become better as time passes.
Schedule group team building
Every company has some sort of a culture and goal. This is easily perceived by in-house employees, but delivering this feeling to a remote employee is a bit more challenging. Like already mentioned, simply relying on the paycheck at the end of the month to boost motivation is not going to cut it for the majority of employees.
There needs to be a story they are all part of. However, with the distance involved, your remote employees might not actually realize the story behind your brand, which will make their working hours dull, leading to demotivation over time.
Solving this issue is quite easy. If you want to keep your remote team motivated, organizing team building activities is a perfect way to achieve this goal. Once every couple of months, organize a team get-together, where remote employees will get to see what the company looks like, experience its culture and get a sense of who the people they are collaborating with are.
Additionally, take this time to talk to the remote employees about their role in the whole process and what they can expect in the future. Working on your career is perceived as a slow and difficult journey, so show your remote team what their path with your company is – it will motivate them more in the future.
These are some of the principles to follow with remote employees if you want them to stay by your side and build trust with them, but most importantly, if you want them to stay motivated to work with you. Don’t forget to use employee monitoring software – it will help you get some insight into how each of your remote team members performs. With this approach, not only will your company grow, but it will also make the employees working for you feel great.