WFH-March

4 Tips To Improve the Productivity of Your Team Working at Home

Jan. 28, 2021
Some work-at-home appears here to stay; here's how to manage and motivate remote employees.

As home working becomes the norm, managers are having to adapt to new challenges and obstacles standing between their teams and appropriate levels of productivity.

Luckily, you can be proactive in pursuing improved employee engagement even if they are not operating out of the office, and these handy tips will give you a framework on which to base any changes you choose to implement.

Offering incentives is effective

Team members are more likely to knuckle down and fulfill their responsibilities if they have a good reason for being as productive as possible, which is where implementing programs to incentivize employees comes into play.

Whether you introduce the prospect of rewards and bonuses to those who commit to important projects, give perks to people who are team players even when working remotely, or send out gifts and goodies to employees so they can treat themselves while getting down to business at home, there are lots of incentive options to consider.

This is not just about dangling a carrot in front of them and expecting them to chase it regardless; it is about enhancing morale and showing members of staff that you care about them and want to recognize their achievements.

Issue employees the right resources

Even if workers are willing to put in the hours when working from home, they will be unable to hit optimal levels of productivity if they lack the tools to do their jobs efficiently.

It is the responsibility of managers and business decision-makers to recognize that employees need the right combination of hardware, software and connectivity to flourish in a remote work scenario. If some people are fortunate enough to have access to excellent internet access and own a powerful laptop or desktop computer, while others are muddling along with far fewer resources of this kind at their disposal, the gulf in productivity levels will become patently obvious.

Issuing upgrades and paying for software subscriptions to streamline remote working may have upfront and ongoing costs for the business to bear, but the alternative is a serious dip in productivity that will be even more expensive to accommodate in the long term.

Stay in touch

Even if you are used to taking a hands-off approach to team management in the office, it is worth being more rigorous and consistent with your catch-ups and check-ins when some or all of your employees are working from home.

Scheduling virtual meetings on a daily basis, even if these just last for a few minutes, will give you the one-to-one time with team members that will ensure that everyone is in the loop and up to speed. This is clearly advantageous for making sure that everyone is keeping up with their workload, but will also be positive from the point of view of taking stock and addressing any issues or concerns that might be developing.

Establish distinct workspaces in the home

While many people may not have the luxury of portioning off part of their home for the purposes of work, those that do have a spare room or space that they can make their own should be encouraged to adopt a hardline approach to this.

This is all about setting a boundary between work and home life, which can so easily become blurred otherwise.

It also merges with the idea of sticking to a similar routine to the one that most office workers experience; namely waking up in the morning, getting dressed and then entering the mindspace needed to be productive once you step through the doors of your workplace. Even if that space is part of your home, having a routine to follow and a clear distinction between it and the rest of the residence is useful.

Each remote team member will have their own needs and quirks to address when managing them remotely, so most of all you need to be willing to be flexible and also to listen to feedback as you go about implementing any new policies.

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