Esevel - how to engage remote employees

5 Leader Tips On How To Engage Remote Employees

2020 has hit the world with one too many questions. “When will the vaccine come out?” or “when do we get to travel again?” But for leaders in companies, a question that has been occupying their minds have been “how do we keep our remote teams engaged?”.

It therefore won’t come as a surprise that many companies polled said they will adopt remote working, even after the Covid-19 pandemic.

To employees, they see this as a means where they can save time and money and achieve a better work-life balance. And to employers, they reap the benefits of cost-savings and the ability to attract talents from around the globe.

However, companies still face challenges in keeping their remote teams engaged and motivated across time zones. With the reduction in face-to-face interactions, managers fear that this could hurt employee engagement and performance.

What is employee engagement? 

If your employees are emotionally engaged in their work, they are not just working for the pay that comes in at the end of the month.

They perform because they are driven by their dedication to the company as a whole, and the managers to whom they directly report.

How to keep your remote team engaged 

Companies have adopted different ways and methods to ensure the engagement of their remote teams.

1. Promote health and wellness

Your employees health, be it physical or mental health, should always be a top priority.

Your employees’ mental well-being is an equally important part of the equation.

Esevel - how to engage remote employees

Not only does this allow a sense of competition and inclusion, it also allows employees to stretch it out and walk around the house. 

2. Host camera-on meetings and casual hangouts

The importance of regularly checking in with your employees cannot be over-emphasized.

A virtual check-in session between colleagues is a great way for employees to catch up with one another. And this will be even better if supplemented with in-person team meetings at the office or a co-working space on a weekly or bi-weekly basis.

Esevel - how to engage remote employees

Asking team members to turn on their web cameras will also help to foster better communication. Being able to see their colleagues facial expressions, instead of endless instant messaging, can help employees feel more connected to one another. See our tips for keeping your remote team engaged during video conferencing.

Leaders will also be able to get a gauge on their employees’ well-being in real time when seeing the body language and tone of their employee. There are a variety of collaboration tools available to be able to support these online communications, such as Google Hangouts, Zoom and Slack.  

3. Provide clear and transparent guidelines and structure

Working from home or remotely can cause gaps or misunderstandings in communication. As such, employers should always establish a clear and transparent remote work guideline. This would help employees know what’s expected of them when working remotely. 

A confidential channel to Human Resource should also be provided so employees can provide feedback for sensitive matters. This could also prove helpful if there are any broken lines of communication.  

One of the complaints employees have of remote work is that work tends to creep into their personal life.

By providing clear guidance on designated working hours through the policy, you can help employees draw a clear line between work and family life.

4. Showing appreciation

We are all used to having that early morning coffee treat, a batch of freshly baked muffins or birthday celebrations for colleagues in the office.

We all know that employee recognition is a vital step to boost their morale and make everyone feel like part of a team.

But how do you do this when your team is working from home?

Creative ideas that we’ve seen include sending virtual gift cards for someone’s birthday, or doing a surprise Lunch Bash for a team who’s celebrating a win. Or even sending over a bottle of wine for a co-worker who went the extra mile to get a job done.

Small and simple acts like these can go a long way and is a very effective way on how to keep your remote team engaged.

5. Promote personal connections

Always keep in mind that your employees are still human. Some days may be great, and some days may be bad.

Being at home with family members could also cause more friction as this is a working environment they are not used to. It is always important to have patience and understanding when your employee is going through a stressful moment, and to provide support in helping them handle it.

How do you handle this as a team leader?

You can approach this by caring for your employees as people instead of workers. They will immediately feel a higher sense of appreciation when you take note of what they enjoy or excel at, and try to incorporate that in their work.

Find out their future plan in terms of career development and personal growth, and bear this in mind when assigning them tasks. This would not only help them enjoy what they do, but will also help increase productivity.

10 remote engagement ideas from global businesses

Remote employee engagement strategies aren’t one-size-fits-all for business. Many companies have their unique approach to engaging their remote workforce. Down here are 10 examples from 10 seasoned global businesses you can refer to.

Google’s “Virtual Coffee” Rituals: Google encourages “virtual coffee breaks” where team members can connect informally, discussing non-work-related topics, fostering personal connections.

Buffer’s Transparency Practice: Buffer, known for its transparency, shares almost all aspects of its business with employees, including salaries. This openness fosters trust and a sense of belonging among remote workers.

Zapier’s Regular Retreats: Zapier, a fully remote company, organizes annual all-hands retreats, allowing team members to meet and bond in person, which strengthens team cohesion.

Basecamp’s Async Work Style: Basecamp promotes asynchronous communication, enabling employees to work when they’re most productive, regardless of location or time zone, reducing the need for immediate responses.

Trello’s “Work from Anywhere” Policy: Trello supports a “work from anywhere” approach, providing employees with the flexibility to choose their work environment, which boosts morale and productivity.

Dropbox’s “Virtual First” Toolkit: Dropbox developed a “Virtual First” toolkit, offering resources and best practices to help employees navigate remote work, emphasizing work-life balance and wellness.

Salesforce’s Well-being Surveys: Salesforce regularly conducts well-being surveys to check in on remote employee health and satisfaction, using the feedback to adjust their engagement strategies.

HubSpot’s Remote Work Advocates: HubSpot has designated remote work advocates who help ensure that remote employees’ needs are considered in all company decisions, promoting an inclusive remote culture.

Spotify’s “Work From Anywhere” Model: Spotify allows employees to choose whether they want to work in the office, remotely, or at a co-working space, and provides a subscription stipend for those who choose co-working spaces.

Facilitate safe and successful remote work

With remote work becoming the new norm, these are a few ways to keep your remote teams engaged.

For sure, it will take time and effort to implement these changes compay wide. However, companies will definitely stand to reap the benefits from enabling remote work in the long run.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Demo Title

Demo Description

Introducing your First Popup.
Customize text and design to perfectly suit your needs and preferences.

This will close in 20 seconds