According to a recent study, organizations with engaged employees outdo those businesses with low employee engagement by 202%; the former boast of lower attrition rates, improved productivity, and higher profitability.
As businesses spread their footprints world over, it’s essential to ensure that engagement between in-house employees and remote employees is a constant process. This will ensure remote employees don’t suffer from isolation, which in turn, could affect their engagement and productivity.
So, the takeaway is that businesses should focus on teamwork and collaboration.
Further, some studies suggest emotional pain arising from social exclusion could is equivalent to physical pain such as stubbing of a toe, given that both the pains gets processed from the same area of the brain.
In short, if you want your work-from-home employees to feel part of your organization, then you need to engage them, re-engage them regularly.
Here I walk you through 5 ways to keep your remote employees engaged and working for you.
#1. Organize Get togethers Once in a While
This is not as easy as it could cost more money than expected. However, it helps team bonding. Not every month, but, at least, once or twice in a year remote employees could report to the Head Quarters during a quarterly sales meeting or business review meetings to meet and bond with the in-house team members. So, make sure to earmark some budget for the same every year.
Also, managers could make it a point to meet employees located remotely, when they are visiting a particular city on a business trip. The manager should take her out for a coffee or lunch, and establish a rapport with her.
#2. Keep Team Chat Ongoing
We are not robots. We are walking, talking humans, with a need for socializing. For all the time we spend on meeting deadlines and getting work done, the success of a business depends mainly on the ability of the teams to collaborate, share ideas and develop an emotional connection with fellow workers.
So, even if you are remotely working, connect with other employees through team collaboration softwares. Come to think of it, you could use Slack, Trello, Skype and FaceTime to collaborate. This is one of the best ways to build team bonding. While you could talk about both personal and professional life in a chat stream, for projects wherein you need to be completely formal, you could create separate chat streams.
#3. Hold Video Conferencing Regularly
As it turns out, it’s easy to build relationships with people with whom we interact regularly and especially with those whom we use video conversations. Seeing someone over the video helps you create a rapport of different kind which is not entirely possible over the phone. And thanks to combined screen sharing, you get to see everybody, both managers and employees from around the world, huddled together in one single room.
Seeing each other helps build personal bond which could make it easier to do things more efficiently.
#4. Deliver Constant Feedback and Recognition
Giving feedbacks seems so hard for businesses that managers tend to avoid it, especially when it comes to delivering feedbacks via video calls. However, the fact is, this type of feedback is essential for helping employees. Like any other employee, remote employees look for growth and, giving them constructive feedback helps them better their performance and, in turn, the performance of the company.
Along with constructive feedback, it’s equally important to give recognition to employees. The recognition and feedback ratio should be 7:1. Positive recognition enhances performances, especially if the recognition is logged into a company portal. It helps employees connect, not to mention, learn from each other.
#5. Record Conversions via feedback tool
During in-person communication, we tend to share non-verbal cues that get lost during remote conversations. A remote worker may type “yes” to a particular thing, but when the project gets done and dusted, she may find out that certain things were not in keeping with her thought process. This is where documentation helps. Documenting conversation on an email or a feedback tool ensures that both parties are on the same page right from the start of the project and no discrepancies or misunderstanding crop up during any stage of the project.
When you are talking about employee engagement, make sure your remote employees are not left out. For this, find the right tools and more than anything else, make sure your managers gel with the remote team. This is important because finding the right remote workforce is just one thing. It’s another thing to keep them engaged and productive.
Author Bio: This is Jennifer Warren, a Content Crafter for GoodFirms – a review and research platform for mobile app development, web development companies and more. The company publishes research reports on a time to time basis. Lately, the company also released a research report on PPC Management.