Quick Tips #11: The Five Ways You Can Help Remote Employees Feel Like They Are Full Members of Your Team
Written by Injoy Global Co-Founder & COO, Jeff Baietto on June 9, 2020
The COVID-19 crisis has obviously forced more employees to work off-site than ever before. But the shift to remote work has been increasing for some time. In fact, according to FlexJobs, remote work in the U.S. has grown by 44% in the past five years – and 91% over the past decade.
While many workers will eventually return to a standard office setting, a significant portion will remain remote. And you may want to enable them to do so. As Bill Gates has said, work flexibility may be the single-best way to keep a top-tier employee. And 75% of millennials would take pay cuts in exchange for flexible office hours.
The downside of remote work is its potential impact on your off-site workers – and your culture. If companies do not make a conscious effort, remote workers can feel ignored, forgotten or overlooked. Here are five tips that can help them feel like they are full-fledged – and equally valued - members of your team.
1. Celebrate new remote employees just like you would a new on-site arrival– Welcome them in front of the whole company when they arrive, provide plenty of info on their background – along with a nice photo - and help them to get to know their new team members.
And once they get started, celebrate their victories publicly. Publish remote success stories to show everyone how valuable they are to your company. This will help remote workers feel like they are an important part of your team.
2. Ensure remote employees receive regular training – Helping remote employees to improve their skills demonstrates your willingness to invest in their future. It sends a clear message that you care about their value, their professional growth – and their long-term prospects with your company.
Fully trained workers will be far more loyal – and far more valuable - to your company in the long. Every employee is a vital part of your success no matter where they work. Maximizing their potential will help everyone.
3. Publicly reward – and promote - remote employees – Remote employees often feel that they have less opportunity to climb the corporate ladder. And if they feel that they can’t advance at your company – they may leave.
Start by training your managers to assess remote workers objectively. Many studies show that remote workers are actually more productive. Ensure they are eligible for leadership roles, significant responsibilities – and promotions. Announce these promotions company-wide.
4. Ensure they feel they are included in everything – An inclusive culture should do just that – make everyone feel included! So make sure your remote employees know they are invited – and exceedingly welcome - at all of your office parties, informal off-site gatherings – or yearly retreats.
It’s easy to feel that if you are out of sight, you’re out of mind. To that end, you may encourage remote workers to stop by the office from time to time. This will give them invaluable facetime with their bosses, peers – and senior management. Putting a living, breathing face to a name can go a long way.
5. Keep remote employees connected via a 24/7 communications and culture performance platform – Cloud-based culture improvement platforms, like Injoy Global’s Culti-Vate Performance Improvement Platform can be particularly effective because they are used by every employee in largely the same way – whether they are on-site or remote.
They also enable employees from across the company, the country – and sometimes even the globe - to interact with one another, overcome challenges together – and become a stronger team. Cloud-based platforms can also help you as an employer to gain a much clearer view of the effectiveness of their culture as a whole.
We still may not know when COVID-19 will go away for good. But we can rest assured that remote work is here to stay. These tips will help ensure that your culture remains as strong – or even stronger – than if your entire workforce was on-site.
We’ll get through this.
Jeff P.S. Please share your own tips or suggestions on what you are doing with your teams in the comments below. -- Jeff Baietto COO + Co-Founder