Employee Engagement Guide for Remote Managers
Employee engagement is vital in remote work. If you are a manager or an HR leader, this article is for you. Read on to understand how to boost employee engagement in your remote teams.
Employee engagement just like many other issues in an organization adapting to remote work, is one that needs the attention of an HR professional but the extra attention of the managers.
Managers are the key stakeholders in maintaining a high level of employee engagement in the team.
To keep the employee engagement high, managers need to take care of factors like building rapport, boosting their morale, recognition, constructive feedback and more.
Let us discuss each of these and more in detail. But first let us understand what is employee engagement.
What is employee engagement?
Employee engagement refers to the emotional commitment the employee has towards the company and its goals.
Engaged employees care for the company; they’re not simply working for a paycheck or a promotion.
Thus, engaged employees lead to better business outcomes.
The first step towards understanding employee engagement is to understand what motivates people, what drives their actions and how it translates into productivity.
And managers and leaders are the key drivers in ensuring a high level of employee engagement in the organization.
However, the task takes a different course in the context of remote work, as you cannot see your employees in person now and must use the right tools to keep them engaged.
Let us deep dive into various aspects of employee engagement in remote work.
How to build connection with your remote team?
Human connection is of supreme importance, especially in remote wrk, when the team does not share the same woking space.
Building strong relationships in the team helps in having more effective meetings and discussions. And the easiest tool in helping you do so is icebreakers.
In an unusual remote setup like the one the world is experiencing today, every interaction with your team, be it a casual conversation or a meeting, is an opportunity to:
- Allow your team to share about themselves and bond with you
- Actively listen to them and understand their challenges
- Empathize and let them know that you care
- Together, work out satisfactory solutions to ongoing problems
- Restore focus on productivity and efficiency, and
- Ensure business continuity despite unpredictable hiccups
Read the full article on how to use icebreaker questions to build a better connect with your team for employee engagement.
ICEBREAKER QUESTIONS EBOOK
Icebreaker questions you can ask in every meeting during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Engaging Remote Employees During and After Covid-19
The workforce that was used to going to the office, interacting with colleagues and customers, and had no experience of working remotely, has been forced by the pandemic to work from their homes.
Engaging remote employees is now about collaborating with our colleagues/ customers/ vendors, etc. and keeping them motivated towards their work through better and more open communication, giving them autonomy, and setting clear expectations & processes.
Employees are afraid to go to work due to the worldwide spread of the deadly virus.
This has been one of the driving factors to promote a remote work culture that will sooner or later be the ‘new normal’ for many industries that do not need on-site management.
When times are this tough, a flexible and distributed workforce will be one of the leading HR trends in the future of work with a focus on agility and adaptability, not only for the employees but for the employer too.
How important is employee engagement for productivity?
Employee engagement is a key differentiator when it comes to the capacity for growth and innovation.
Plenty of research studies support the relationship between employee engagement and productivity.
Gallup found that teams with high employee engagement rates were 21% more productive and had 28% less internal theft than those with low engagement.
Get some quick actionable steps to keep your remote employees engaged, keeping the COVID-19 pandemic situation in mind.
Using recognition for employee engagement
When you have remote employees, the need for effective employee recognition becomes all the more important.
Especially during the times of Covid-19, a little praise and recognition from their manager can lift an employee’s spirit.
As a result, a remote employee may start feeling under-appreciated and uninspired.
Hence, it becomes even more crucial to take extra efforts in making them feel recognized and valued.
When they are recognized for the impact of their work, they feel more aligned with the team goal and develop a sense of belonging to the organization.
Read this article to know all about employee recognition and how it helps in boosting employee engagement while working remotely.
How to build rapport with remote team for employee engagement?
As a manager you must ensure your team has a good rapport with your remote team.
Your job isn’t just to steer projects to a successful end while staying within budgets and timelines.
Your employees are not your workhorses. They’re so much more than ‘just employees.’
You’re also responsible for these crucial roles:
- Coaching your direct reports through their career development goals
- Understanding their motivations and ambitions and helping them grow
- Helping them maintain a balance between their personal and professional lives
You can’t build trust if all you share with your team members is a transactional relationship.
If you build rapport genuinely with your direct reports, you will engender their trust.
How to build trust for employee engagement?
Trust is not simply about having positive feelings or liking the people one works with.
By fostering a culture of trust, companies can make a meaningful difference in business outcomes and employee engagement.
This is because a culture of trust enables greater productivity, increased profitability, and better quality products and services.
ct, a Harvard study found that employees at high-trust companies experience:
- 50% greater productivity
- 76% more engagement
- 74% less stress
Being trusted to accomplish tasks on your own is a great motivator. And trust is key to the success of remote teams.
Read this article to know how to build trust with your employees for employee engagement.
It’s clear that employee engagement is key to having productive teams, whether employees are in the office or working from home.
Almost everyone, with the exception of essential workers, is working remotely.
Remote work isn’t going away anytime soon, so it makes sense to understand how to increase employee engagement and, in turn, boost productivity.
Want to become a better manager?
Start with great 1-on-1s to build high performing teams.